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THE 

Life and Adventures 

OF 

"NED BUNTLINE" 



By 

FRED E. POND 

11 Wildwood^ 



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COL. EDWARD Z. C. JUDSON 
("NED BUNTLINE"; 




LIFE AND ADVENTURES 
OF "NED BUNTLINE" 

WITH 

Ned Buntline's Anecdote of " Frank Forester " 
And Chapter of Angling Sketches 



By FRED E. POND 

("Will Wildwood"} 

Editor of " Frank Forester's Fugitive Sporting Sketches/' 
" Sporting Scenes and Characters," etc. 



NEW YORK 

THE CADMUS BOOK SHOP 
1919 




Table of Contents 



Introduction 1 

Anecdote of Frank Forester 4 

CHAPTER I 
Boyhood, Early Adventures, and First Story t 

CHAPTER II 
In the Seminole War and in Gotham 24 

CHAPTER III 
The Novelist's Intense Patriotism "Ned Buntline's 

Own" 45 

CHAPTER IV 
Life in the Adirondacks A Hunter's Home 55 

CHAPTER V 
Ned Buntline in the Civil War 68 

CHAPTER VI 
Unjust Imprisonment of Ned Buntline 74 

CHAPTER VII 
With "Scouts of the Plains," and at Home 84 

CHAPTER VIII 
Later Years Personal Reminiscences 100 

CHAPTER IX 
Ned Buntline as An Angling Writer 109 

CHAPTER X 
Ned Buntline as a Writer of Verse 119 

CHAPTER XI 
Closing Years of a Remarkable Career 126 

Books by Ned Buntline 139 



ILLUSTRATIONS 



Portrait of Col. Judson "Ned Buntline" Frontispiece 

Portrait of H. W. Herbert "Frank Forester. . .Facing Page 4 
Portrait of Seth Green Facing Page 111 



INTRODUCTION 

The life history of Col. Edward Zane Carroll 
Judson ("Ned Buntline") is more thrilling than 
romance, as his career, from boyhood to middle 
age, was a succession of adventures by land and sea; 
as a sportsman and angler in the then primitive wil- 
derness and lake region of the Adirondacks, as a 
midshipman in the navy, a soldier in the Seminole 
war, the Mexican war, the four years of warfare 
between the North and South, and finally in the In- 
dian wars of the wild west. 

Colonel Judson's record should have lasting fame 
first, for his unfaltering Americanism and his in- 
fluence for loyalty in the times that literally tried 
men's souls; then, on account of his really remark- 
able literary achievements in the line of realistic 
romance, bringing into world-wide fame the last if 
not the most notable of American scouts and fron- 
tiersman "Buffalo Bill," "Wild Bill," "Texas 
Jack," and other fearless scouts of the plains, whose 
deeds of daring were no less thrilling than those of 
Daniel Boone and Kit Carson in an earlier era; and 
last, but of equal interest to all lovers of out-door 



2 

sports, his graphic, delightful sketches relating to 
shooting and fishing, with his personal reminiscences 
of some of the pioneers of American sporting litera- 
ture. 

Considered in the light of realistic fiction, Ned 
Buntline's sea tales and border romances will com- 
pare favorably with the best of J. Fenimore 
Cooper's celebrated novels in fact it is safe to state 
that in the remarkable series descriptive of the ad- 
ventures of the scouts of the plains the popular 
stories written by Ned Buntline had far greater de- 
gree of accuracy as to depicting real scenes and in- 
cidents than any of Cooper's tales. Priority, 
rather than preciseness of work; studious care in 
preparation, in place of a hastily written and volum- 
inous amount of fiction, to meet the demand of 
press and public these conditions combine to give 
the earlier novelist more enduring fame. 

The series entitled "Life and Adventures of Ned 
Buntline" first appeared in Wildwood's Magazine, 
and the limited edition now published in book form 
with some additional reminiscences and an enter- 
taining "Anecdote of Frank Forester, by Ned Bunt- 
line" may serve to interest the enthusiastic col- 
lectors of personal memoirs of noteworthy men; 
writers who have not only put forth a liberal amount 
of stirring fiction, but have led adventurous lives 
similar to those represented.in their novels. If con- 
sidered from this viewpoint alone, Colonel Judson 
would stand at the head of American novelists, as 



-3- 



no other has shown such a wonderful career of real, 
often reckless daring as he whose name was known 
to comparatively few while his nom de plume ("Ned 
Buntline") at the height of his success, was known 
to millions; but fame is fleeting, and the man of 
phenomenal energy, of dauntless courage, of once 
national reputation, now rests almost unknown to 
the younger generation in the shadow of his loved 
home "The Eagle's Nest," in the Highlands of the 
Hudson. 




ANECDOTE OF FRANK FORESTER 



By NED BUNTLINE 
(Col. Edward Z. C. Judson) 




Y EARLY association with Henry William 
Herbert ("Frank Forester") is indelibly 
impressed upon the tablets of memory. I 
remember the sporting author as a digni- 
fied, scholarly gentleman, warm-hearted, a 
brilliant conversationalist, full of anecdote and 
sporting reminiscences. Snobs were his aversion. 
Generous to a fault, he would give, not share, his 
last dollar, when any worthy person was in need 
and came under his notice. His cosy country seat, 
"The Cedars,' 1 on the Passaic River, near Newark, 
N. J., was the retreat for not only many wealthy 
and distinguished friends, but also for more than 
one unfortunate or unlucky man of letters, whose 
literary efforts had been poorly rewarded. Though 
English, and aristocratically so by birth, he was 
much attached to America as the home of his adop- 
tion. All his works show this. Yet he was very 




HENRY WILLIAM HERBERT 
("FRANK FORESTER j 



5 

sensitive, and any apparent slight or lack of courtesy 
on the part of others was not lightly or easily for- 
given. His over-sensitive nature often involved him 
in heated controversies, and even quarrels, in regard 
to his native land, England. The writer found this 
out in a strange way. At a dinner party given by 
William T. Porter, of the Spirit of the Times, at the 
Carlton House, New York, where Herbert boarded, 
there were present, if I remember correctly, Pap 
Richards, of the Spirit; Charles Elliott, the great 
portrait painter; Lewis Gaylord Clarke, editor of 
the Knickerbocker Magazine; Dempster, the com- 
poser and balladist; "Frank Forester," and the 
writer hereof. 

The dinner, strictly game, was profuse and ele- 
gant, and after the cloth was removed songs and 
stories were called for. Dempster sang, Clarke told 
some of his inimitable anecdotes and then called on 
the writer for a French story he had once heard him 
tell. Not for an instant thinking of giving Herbert 
offense, the story was told. It was of a French- 
man who had been captured by the British frigate 
Guerriere, telling of the capture of the latter by the 
American frigate Constitution, in the war of 1812. 
It ran thus : 

"Shentilmens ! Wen ze Yankee Doodle natione 
was 'ave ze war wiz ze John Bull natione, I was in 
Havre wiz my leetle breeg, La Belle Julie. And I 
sink I will make one grand speculatione. I load my 
breeg wiz a beautiful cargo of ze wine, ze brandy 



6 

and ze sausage de Bologna; and I make sail for 
Amerique to sell zem. Four, five days I sail along 
finely, zen along come one John Bull freegat, and 
she go boom wiz her big gun and I stop my leetle 
breeg. Zen a John Bull officiare he come on board 
my breeg and he say : 

u Sare! I 'ave ze onare to take possessione in ze 
name of his Brittanic Majesty. 

"I reply: 'Sare! I very much oblige to heez Brit- 
tanic Majesty.' Mon Dieu ! I was not oblige at all. 

"Zen he remove plenty of ze brandy and wine to 
ze John Bull freegat, and he remove me and my 
men and make fire to my breeg, and send her to 
Davy Jones' lockare. Mon Dieu I was more mad 
az I can speak. I look at my poor breeg, and I 
swear and tear my hair and weep like as one foun- 
taine ! 

u Zen ze John Bull capitan he come to me and 
say: 'Nevare mind zis is but ze fortune of war!' 

" 'Aha !' I reply to heem 'it is one bad for- 
tune !' 

"Then he say: 'Cheer up ! Come in ze cabin and 
take some brandy wiz me.' ' 

"I sank him, I sink I will. Zen I go in ze cabin 
and he pour for me and for heem each a glass of 
brandy. Zen I say to him: 

" 'Sare your varee goo't' hel't!' (good health) 
and he say to me ze same. 

"I taste of zat brandy. Sacre! I throw it on ze 
floor. I spit it from my mouth. Zat John Bull 



7 

capitan have ask me zare to drink my own brandy. 

"At zat moment a John Bull sailare cry out 
'Sail ho. 1 

"Capitan Dacre zat was his name he go out 
and wiz his glass see one Yankee Doodle freegat 
come zat way. He cry out : 

*' 'Clear ze sheep for actione! Give ze men 
some of zat Frenchmen's brandy, for to make zem 
brave. In ten minutes from ze first gun I shall 
wheep zat Yankee Doodle.' 

"I no say nothing, but I pray ze Bon Dieu ze boot 
go on ze ozzare leg. 

"By and by ze freegat came close, and boom ! 
boom ! go ze guns. I 'ave some business away down 
to ze bottom of ze freegat right away. I 'ave no 
business where come ze shot like hail no sare! 
After a leetle while I hear no more ze boom of ze 
big guns, and zen I go on ze deck. Oh ! Mon Dieu ! 
what a beautiful sight. Ze deck it was covare wiz 
dead John Bull mens. Ze masts zey were all gone ! 
Ze John Bull flag was pull down, and a Yankee 
Doodle officaire come in one boat and say: 

' 'I have ze honare to receive possessione of your 
sword, Capitan Dacre.' 

"He look very mad, and I say: 
' 'Nevare mind, Capitan Dacre zis is ze for- 
tune of war.' 

' 'One curseed bad fortune,' he reply." 

"I say to heem: 'Capitan, drink a leetle of my 
brandy. It will cheer you up.' 



g 

"He say to me: 'Go to ze d // 

"I say: 'No sare! I will go to ze Yankee Doodle 
freegat wiz you, for your old freegat is full of holes, 
and soon she will go down to Davy Jones' lockare to 
look for my leetle breeg.' ' 

This was all the story, and it brought laughter 
from every one but Herbert. He was silent, and 
looked very grim. The party broke up soon after, 
and I was astonished the next morning by a note 
from Herbert to this effect: 

"If I thought Englishmen needed brandy to make 
them brave, I could be convinced to the contrary by 
naming a friend to arrange preliminaries, etc." 

I was never more surprised in my life, and I went 
right over to the "Spirit of the Times" office to see 
Porter. While he and I were laughing over the 
matter, Herbert himself dropped in. I walked up to 
him with the note in my hand and told him sincerely 
that I had no thought of reflecting on English cour- 
age, and that the story was only an old one dressed 
over to show the amusing side of the broken French 
idiom. 

Herbert was all right in a second, and four of us 
adjourned next door to smile over what could have 
been made a serious affair had either party been 
foolishly punctilious. 



CHAPTER^ ONE 

BOYHOOD, EARLY ADVENTURES, AND 
FIRST STORY 




N a picturesque vale among the mountains 
of the Catskill range, near the head 
waters of the Delaware river, lies the quiet 
village of Stamford, noted for its health- 
ful location, and the lovely scenery of the 
surrounding country, but more widely celebrated as 
the birth-place and home of "Ned Buntline." 

Mr. L. Carroll Judson, a sturdy, intellectual rep- 
resentative of an old and honored family tracing 
descent from "the Puritan forefathers" came to 
Stamford in an early day and made his home in the 
highlands. Like the rigid stock of old Plymouth, 
he was a stern and unyielding man, cold and me- 
thodical, with intense energy, a will of iron. His 
household was regulated by rules which were 
deemed as immutable as the laws of the ancient 
Medes and Persians, and this strict discipline was 
held to be highly commendable by the ultra-moral- 
ists of that day. At times he would exhibit the 



' 



10 

warmer impulses of his nature by generous deeds 
and kind words, genial as the glimpses of sunshine 
that break through threatening clouds. A lawyer by 
profession, he was a man of literary taste, and gave 
evidence of considerable talent in this direction by 
the publication of several books chiefly historical 
and practical works. One of these, entitled "The 
Sages and Heroes of the American Revolution," has 
been widely read and is still frequently quoted. The 
taste for literature and scholarship may be men- 
tioned as a family characteristic, reaching in indi- 
vidual instances a high degree of merit as evinced 
in the career of Adoniram Judson, the famous mis- 
sionary. Mr. L. Carroll Judson's work in the line 
of authorship was undertaken as a diversion or re- 
laxation from his legal pursuits in which he at- 
tained a high reputation. 

Amid such surroundings and influences Edward 
Zane Carroll Judson the "Ned Buntline" of later 
years was born March 20, 1823. A terrible storm 
prevailed on the night of his birth. Dr. Howard, 
who was present on the occasion, relates that it was 
a wild, dark and fearful night, the flood-gates of 
Heaven appeared wide open, the wind swept over 
the mountains and along the valley with the fury of 
a tempest, while the vivid flashes of lightning and re- 
verberations of thunder made the spectators tremble. 
This circumstance was impressed upon the mind of 
young Judson, who often heard the incident men- 
tioned, and it caused a foreboding that his journey 



II 

of life would be equally turbulent and tempestuous; 
a prediction that was fully verified. At a later period 
he gave a vivid description, in verse, of the memora- 
ble night and his stormy career. The little poem is 
entitled "March-Born," and the first stanza runs as 
follows : 

Born when tempests wild were raging 

O'er the earth, athwart the sky, 
When mad spirits seemed as waging 

Battle fierce for mast'ry ; 
Born when thunder loudly booming 
Shook the roof above my head 
When red lightning lit the gloaming 
Which o'er land and sea was spread. 

In 1826 his father removed to Wayne county, 
Pa., then almost a wilderness, and young Judson 
learned his first lessons from the glowing leaves of 
the grand old book of Nature. He was a born 
hunter and angler. The trout streams of that sec- 
tion were abundant, and Ned loved nothing better 
than to drop an occasional line to his finny friends 
in the depths, while the fish responded to his kind at- 
tentions by coming out of the wet. Ned's pro- 
pensity for playing truant sometimes led to a rather 
severe chastisement, as his father believed firmly in 
the old creed: "Spare the rod and spoil the child." 
The son was a convert to the same belief, but pre- 
ferred to use the rod himself in whipping the 
streams for trout. 

The lad inherited the same spirit of determina- 
tion that was displayed by his sire, and to this was 



12 

added Spartan courage and endurance. He did not 
rebel against paternal authority, but continued by 
hook or crook to go a-fishing. His skill with the 
rod and gun finally won his father's admiration. 
Before he was six years of age he learned to shoot 
well with a heavy rifle which he could not hold at 
arm's length, and therefore fired it at rest over a 
log or fence rail. When eight years of age his dis- 
play of markmanship so pleased the elder Judson 
that he purchased a seven-pound rifle for Ned, who 
went out at dawn the next morning and killed a fine 
doe in a field near the house. "From that time to 
the present day," said Ned Buntline in writing to a 
friend, in 1878, "I have been a hunter." These 
hunting exploits and fishing jaunts awakened in the 
lad all the latent love of adventure that was to form 
the more thrilling and romantic portion of his life's 
record. 

The wild, roving life of a young woodsman had 
become so thoroughly congenial to young Judson 
that he had mentally decided to follow the illustrious 
example of Daniel Boone, when all his anticipations 
were dashed to the ground by removal of the family 
to Philadelphia. Here his father found a wider 
field for the practice of law, and as Ned progressed 
rapidly in his studies the proud sire resolved that 
the boy should be put through a course to prepare 
him for the legal profession. The dry tomes of 
Blackstone and Coke proved utterly distasteful to 
Ned, and he finally refused to continue the obnox- 



13 

ious studies. His father, indignant at this defiance 
of paternal authority, gave the lad a severe flogging, 
and told him the studies must be at once resumed. 
Ned had firmly resolved never to become a lawyer, 
and the severe punishment caused him to run away 
to sea for the purpose of becoming "a sailor on the 
high seas." He had for some time secretly cher- 
ished an ambition to visit distant lands, and he now 
embraced the opportunity to ship as cabin boy on a 
vessel about to sail around Cape Horn. At this 
time he was but eleven years of age, though remark- 
ably strong, active and self-reliant. The voyage was 
rough and much of the romance of sea-life was 
found to be "the baseless fabric of a dream;" yet 
the scenes and adventures of a life on the ocean 
wave proved irresistible to one of his stirring tem- 
perament. Upon returning to Philadelphia he was 
met by his father, who coldly said: 

"So, sir! you have returned? I suppose you are 
sick of the sea, and are willing to ask my forgive- 
ness; and if I permit you to come home, to do as / 
wish, not as you will, eh?" 

"No, sir," answered Ned, calmly but proudly; 
"no, sir; I ask no home from you. I have found a 
dearer home on the breast of the glorious ocean; 
cordial friends and honest men share with me my 
oaken dwelling; and, sir, here none dare strike me; 
no one would strike me; they all love me too 
dearly." 

* The incident, as here given, appears in "Ned Runtime's Life 
Yarn," a serial story. F. E. P. 



14 

"Is this your choice, degenerate boy! A life of 
hardship and peril, shared with such associates; is 
this the life which you choose in preference to one 
of luxury and ease, where you would have nothing 
to do but to study?" 

"Father, a life of honor with these rough men, 
a life of peril and hardship, in preference to a life 
of luxury, where in a fit of hasty anger I may be 
struck to the earth like a refractory slave; any life, 
sir, but that!" 

"Boy, do you know my power and my rightful 
authority? Do you know that I could drag you 
home tied like a felon and lock you there?" 

"Sir, do so! bind and bar me; but remember, no 
locks, bonds or bars can bind my spirit. It is free; 
free as the glad albatross that shines far and wide 
over the ocean, and sleeps when it will on the bosom 
of the wave that feeds it. Exercise your 'rightful 
authority, 1 sir, if you choose; but bind me strong 
and bar me well. I love the ocean ! The sea is my 
home; and beware, sir, lest I seek it again, in spite 
of bolts and bars. Love like mine defies both." 

"Boy, it is well ! You have chosen ! Never enter 
my house again. From this moment I disinherit you 
forever ! Not one farthing of mine shall ever cross 
your palm! Now, sir, enjoy your 'prospects;' en- 
joy your 'association P ' 

"It is well, my father father no longer. I have 
anticipated your kind disinheritance. Since you dis- 
graced me with a blow, I have not borne your name. 



15 

My energies, my hopes, my ambition, and all of the 
man which God has given me, will carry me alone 
through the world. 'Resurgam* is my motto in- 
dependence my character! Farewell, sir; you might 
have made me all you could have wished now I 
will make myself!" 

The father turned sternly away and strode up the 
wharf. The son turned tearfully around toward the 
captain, who met him with open arms. 

"Ned, cheer up, my boy!" said he; "I'll be your 
father now. Cheer up ! We sail to-morrow, with a 
load of flour for Rio de Janeiro. If you want any- 
thing, run down to my locker and get some money, 
and go ashore and buy it; there's the key. Come, 
boy, don't be down-hearted. Grief is like an anchor 
in the hold, where it can't be got at; it only weighs 
down the ship, without being of any use!" 

Ned brightened up ; he felt that he was friendless, 
but he did so long to see his sister and mother. . 
. . But a truce to sadness, and ho ! for the merry 
sea. 



The next year he enlisted as an apprentice on 
board a man-of-war, says an intimate friend and fel- 
low-midshipman, who thus describes young Judson's 
courage and coolness in the face of danger: "He 
was large for his age, strong as a horse, and preco- 
cious. One day a boat of which he was coxswain 
was run over by a Fulton ferry-boat on the East 
river, and upset in floating ice. She drifted down 



16 

toward Governor's Island, in New York bay, and 
Judson managed to get ashore with the whole crew. 
Then he fainted under his injuries and was taken 
back to the Macedonian unconscious. The crew 
were so loud in their praises for rescuing a couple of 
them, that the officers united in a request to have 
him made a midshipman, and President Van Buren 
sent on the commission within a fortnight. 

"Then we young middies whose appointments was 
due to 'influence' refused to mess with him, because 
he had been a common sailor before the mast. On 
the way to the Gulf squadron, on the ship of war 
Levant, where our refusal was made known to him, 
young Judson challenged thirteen of us in a day. 
Some withdrew their refusals and associated with 
him, but seven of the midshipmen fought him, one 
after the other, in Florida, in New Orleans, and in 
Havana. He didn't get a scratch, I believe, but 
four of his adversaries were marked for life. To 
the satisfaction of everybody in the navy he estab- 
lished the presumption that he was as good as any- 
body. Perhaps one circumstance that reduced the 
number of midshipmen that he had to fight was a 
little exhibition on the way down. The captain, who 
made a kind of pet of the boy, hung a bottle out on 
the yard arm, and Judson, at the word of command, 
broke the bottle with one bullet and cut the string 
above it with another. That was the first intimation 
we had that he was even at that age, one of the best 
shots in the United States. He was at this time 



17 

only fifteen years of age, a fact that I can vouch 
for, being one of the seven who fought him on the 
way down to the gulf." 



Two years later an incident occurred which, 
though trivial in itself, changed the whole of Ed- 
ward Judson's after life transforming him from a 
seaman to a novelist. A change had been made in 
the command of the ship, and the new captain, un- 
like his predecessor, was a severe disciplinarian, and 
disliked young Judson for his independent manner 
and the influence he had gained among his fellow 
midshipmen. The serio-comic incident referred to 
may be best told in Ned Buntline's own graphic 
words, as related to a friend who asked him concern- 
ing the origin of his literary career. The anecdote 
is as follows: 

"THE CAPTAIN'S PIG" 

At the time I wrote the first letter or word for 
the press I was a midshipman in our navy. I en- 
tered the navy when I was little more than a child. 
I had sailed round the world when I was eleven 
years old, was promoted to midshipman when I was 
thirteen. I never got promoted by act of Congress 
or Congressmen. My naval academy was hard ex- 
perience in storms on deck and aloft, or as they call 
it, "before the mast." I was thrown in the com- 
pany of a sort of naval aristocracy sons of rich 
men who had won their shoulder-straps by paper 



i8 

certificates. They oftentimes insulted me and re- 
fused to mess with me because I had worked my way 
up. I never was a man disposed to command re- 
spect through love and fawning. If one, two or 
three insulted me, I would knock them down. If 
they kept out of my way I would challenge them to 
fight in the first harbor we landed. Often the very 
fact of the challenge commanded their respect and 
they would take measures to apologize before we 
reached a port. I have, however, been forced to 
command the respect of seven of my equals by meet- 
ing them in mortal combat four of whom I 
wounded; with the three others I exchanged shots, 
unharming or unharmed, but in every case receiving 
their apology. 

I have thus been particular in stating the manner 
in which I obtained the respect of my associates, be- 
cause it was on their account that my future trouble 
arose which resulted in exchanging the pistol for the 
pen. While these officers became my warmest 
friends an event took place which proved that I had 
an enemy in the after part of the ship in the person 
of the captain. We were at the time cruising in the 
Gulf, and although only fifteen years of age I was 
commissary of that department of the man- 
of-war that included all the midshipmen. Our 
ship entered the port of Vera Cruz in Mexico, 
and while there the chief commissary, whose 
duty it was to provide for the officers of the 
ship above the rank of midshipmen, and my- 



19 

self went ashore to purchase supplies. Among other 
necessaries that we purchased were six pigs of the 
same age, the offspring of the same mother. They 
were of the same size and as white as snow, except 
that one had a small black spot on one leg. We 
divided them, then and there, each taking three and 
each paying a half of the purchase price. They 
were put into separate boxes and put with our other 
purchases on board of the ship. I noticed in the 
division that the one with the small black spot came 
to my share. I was very proud of them, and gave 
charge that they be well taken care of. I often 
visited them and took satisfaction in pointing them 
out as beauties to some of my associate middies. 
On our return to Havana a terrible squall sprang 
on us in the night time. The deck was swept. 
When morning came it was discovered that one box 
with its three pigs had been swept overboard, that a 
slat of the other box had been broken off and two 
of the pigs had got out and had followed the other 
three. The only pig left from the deck wreck was 
the one with the black spot on the leg. I ordered 
the box to be repaired and the pig to be taken car$ 
of as before. To my surprise the chief commissary 
claimed the pig. I pointed out the black spot on 
the leg. He claimed never to have noticed it be- 
fore. I pointed out the difference between the 
boxes, and that mine was on deck and his was not. 
He was as obstinate as he was dishonest, and noth- 
ing but that pig would satisfy him. I was just as 



20 

determined that he should not have it. Another 
squall seemed inevitable, for I would have fought 
for that pig, and was getting ready for the fray, 
when a proposition was made to leave our dispute 
to the captain, who was approaching, having heard 
something of our altercation. I acquiesced. With 
pretended sincerity he wished to hear the evidence. 
On my part it was overwhelming. I proved by a 
number of middies that before the storm I was in 
possession of the pig with the black spot on the leg. 
That the box was the same in which my three had 
been kept. I also proved the same by the scullion 
who fed them. Against all this positive evidence the 
chief commissary could only interpose a claim that 
the pig was his, without the least proof to substan- 
tiate it. Nevertheless, the captain decided against 
me. If he decided in my favor, no part of that pig 
would go to the saloon tables, and he would get none 
of it. I claimed that the decision proceeded from 
his belly, not from his head or heart. I made a 
show of full surrender; still I determined to keep my 
eyes on the pig with the design of ultimately getting 
my hand upon it. Fearing another storm, or some 
surreptitious act on my part, or at least on my part 
of the ship, it was cunningly devised at a conspiracy 
in the saloon among the chief officers, including the 
captain, that the pig should be disposed of that day. 
Accordingly the butcher was ordered to kill and 
dress it. A banquet was to be held in the saloon 
that night. I also determined that a banquet should 



21 



be held in the forward cabin, and that if roast pig 
did not form the principal viand I should be the per- 
son to be held accountable. I made every prepara- 
tion that the occasion should be a success. I had all 
necessary luxuries except wine, and this I begged, 
borrowed or bought from the chief steward, with 
the full intention of never paying for it, for I was 
determined that the luxuries of the banquet should 
be drawn from the captain's and chief commissary's 
larder and wine-room. I purposely passed and re- 
passed that galley while that pig was roasting. I 
knew the progress that it was making as well as the 
cook did. I had my guests at the table in good sea- 
son, several of whom I had fought against, all of 
whom I was now fighting for. I had a number of 
the most expert middies to act as carvers. The time 
of our banquet was Half an hour earlier than the one 
in the saloon. I again patrolled the deck. Pass- 
ing the galley, I saw the cook try the pig, and leave 
the oven door open, with a half-suppressed expres- 
sion of satisfaction that the roasting was ended. I 
had only to watch my opportunity for the cook to 
absent himself to assist in the preparation of the 
saloon table. I had not long to wait then with a 
large fork I whipped the pig from the hot pan into 
a cold one and instantly placed it on a side table in 
the cabin. I gave the watchword, "Root hog, or 
die." A neater or cleaner, and to me a more 
satisfactory job never was accomplished. Half 
an hour was passed before the pig was missed, 



22 

another half in search for it in every place but the 
right one. A report was then made to the chief 
commissary and to the captain. To say that they 
were exasperated is putting it light. A search was 
made for bones, but they had joined their kindred 
in the gulf. The captain offered $100 for evidence 
that would convict the person that took the pig. In 
due time we reached Havana. The captain had 
kept up a good deal of growling, and was especially 
surly when I was near him. It was my duty here 
also to go on shore and provide for my department. 
When I approached the gangway I was stopped by 
the guard. I demanded by whose authority I was 
stopped; he said by the captain's. I replied: "I get 
my authority from the commander, not the captain, 1 ' 
and drawing my sword, I said: "If you raise your 
musket to my breast again I'll cut you down as I 
would a piece of old junk." I passed on, went on 
shore, did my marketing, and returned. In due time 
we reached Savannah. I had, during shore hours, 
written a full account of the adventure with the pig. 
I entitled it the "Captain's Pig," by "Ned Buntline." 
The story made a pretty good-sized pamphlet. It 
was printed privately, as publishers were afraid of 
libel suits. Neither the author nor the publisher 
was known. When the captain saw the pamphlet 
he was madder than when he didn't see the pig on 
his table. He again offered a reward of $100 for 
the name of either the author or publisher. He 
found neither. The book is now out of print, and 



23 



I would myself give $100 for a copy of it. This is 
the story of my first venture in writing, and this is 
why I am called "Ned Buntline." 



The first literary production of young Judson 
brought him at once into popularity, as it was repub- 
lished in many periodicals, and finally appeared in 
the old Knickerbocker Magazine, then conducted by 
Lewis Gaylord Clarke, who at the first opportunity 
engaged "Ned Buntline" as a regular contributor. 
Whether ashore or afloat, he thenceforth found time 
to prepare thrilling romances principally tales of 
the sea, during the early portion of his literary ca- 
reer and these novels were read by a host of warm 
admirers, who found the scenes as realistic as any 
ever portrayed by Captain Marryatt or Fenimore 
Cooper. 

At the outbreak of the Seminole War, in Florida, 
the adventurous spirit of young Judson carried him 
enthusiastically into the strife. Although only six- 
teen years of age he served with valor and distinc- 
tion under Jessup, Gaines, Armistead and Worth. 
He recorded, subsequently, the delight with which he 
engaged in the field sports of that section, on every 
possible occasion, and mentioned particularly the 
killing of a very large jaguar, or Southern panther, 
on Key Sargo an achievement that was alike the 
envy and admiration of his associates. 



CHAPTER^ TWO 

IN THE SEMINOLE WAR AND 
IN GOTHAM 




URING the progress of the Seminole War 
young Judson found ample opportunities, 
to indulge his love of wild sport and ad- 
venture, both on land and sea. The "deep, 
tangled wildwoods" of Florida furnished a 
great variety of game, and Ned Buntline reveled 
in the glorious field-sports of that region, so vividly 
described in Whitehead's "Camp Fires of the Ever- 
glades." To one of young Judson's active, adven- 
turous nature the land appeared to be a veritable 
"happy hunting ground," and his pen in after years 
recorded the incidents of many sporting tours among 
everglades and along shore. Under the title of 
"Ducking by Wholesale" he gave the following 
spirited description of a foray among the wildfowl : 
In 1 840 I was an Acting Lieutenant on board the 
U. S. Schooner Otsego, then belonging to what was 
known as McLaughlin's Mosquito Fleet, engaged in 
co-operating with the army in subduing the Semi- 



25 

noles in Florida. The flag schooner, Lieut. Comdg. 
McLaughlin, was the Flirt; the Wave, formerly 
Stevens 1 yacht, was commanded by Lieutenant now 
Admiral John Rogers, and the Otsego by passed 
midshipman, Actg. Lieut. Comdg. Edmund Templar 
Shubrick. Though only a young middy, I was Exe- 
cutive Officer of the Otsego, wore the swab and got 
the pay of a Lieutenant. 

And now for the ducks. Being of light draught, 
Baltimore flat-sharp build, the Otsego was ordered 
to skirt the coast closely from Cape Sable to the 
mouth of the Suwanee, to attack any Indian party 
seen on shore and to look out for some Spanish 
fishing boats that had been reported as furnishing 
powder and lead to the redskins. 

It was midwinter when we anchored late one aft- 
ernoon off the eastern side of the cape near an island 
not then named in our charts, but known ever after 
that night to us as Duck Key. The water and air 
were literally dark with ducks of all kinds and sizes. 
They were so thick that looking to port or star- 
board, far and near, flying in vast flocks or swim- 
ming about, you saw ducks, ducks everywhere. I 
owned a double-barreled Manton as good a gun in 
those days as money could buy. I just ached to take 
a boat and go for those ducks, and I said so. 

But Jim Eagan, our coast pilot, an old Floridian 
said: "Leftenant, the moon will be full to-night, and 
if you'll hearken to me, we'll have ducks enough in 
one hour to-night to last the whole crew longer than 



26 

they'll keep, and have a hundred or two to give 
away, over and above. 

"As soon as it gets fairly night, thousands and 
thousands of these ducks will waddle up on that little 
low island there to lay over till morning. All weVc 
got to do is to take our biggest boat, the one with a 
swivel in the bow, let every man of the crew have his 
musket well charged with duck shot; you with your 
gun and I with old Betsey Ann she carries a quar- 
ter of a pound of shot if she takes an ounce and 
sail in. We'll take cover on the island just at night- 
fall, load the swivel, too, for the boat-keeper to 
handle, and when the ducks come up as thick as flies 
on a carcass, we'll all shoot at the same time and 
I'll bet we pick up a boat load." 

The plan seemed good, and it was adopted. Six- 
teen muskets, Eagan's cannon, as we called his 
Betsey Ann, and a swivel with three pounds of shot 
to half a pound of powder for a load, were added to 
my Manton, loaded for the occasion with near two 
ounces of shot to each barrel, and about four or 
four and a half drachms of powder. 

Leaving the schooner at anchor about half-a-mile 
away we reached the island just as the moon showed 
her great round face above the horizon. Hiding in 
a clump of sea grapes, leaving only a boat-keeper to 
tend the boat and fire the swivel, we waited. 

Not long for inside of an hour the white sand 
of the island could not be seen, bright and clear, 
though the moon shone upon it. It was literally cov- 



> 



ered with ducks; and the water all around the island 
was literally and truly alive with them. 

Guided by Eagan, every man now leveled his mus- 
ket in a direction a little wide from that of the next 
man; the word was passed to the boat-keeper to 
stand by with his swivel, and the order was given : 

"Ready, FIRE!" 

Eagan and I were to shoot on the rise. 

Every musket and the swivel exploded at the same 
moment. Oh, heaven what a fluttering what a 
thunder-burst of flapping wings as we sent in our 
charges ! 

Then, in the bright moonlight, pushing off in our 
boat, we went to picking up game. On shore and in 
the water we found wild fowl enough to load that 
barge's gunwale down to the water with ducks. 
Mallard, teal, canvas back every kind of migra- 
tory duck was there represented, and not by hun- 
dreds but apparently by thousands. 

Never before or since have I seen such slaughter. 
It was "pot-hunting" with a vengeance. We had 
ducks every day three times a day for a week, 
and General Taylor, with the Third Artillery and 
his own regiment, the Sixth Infantry, being at 
Tampa Bay, we ran in there and left them nearly a 
cartload of birds. 

It is not a very sportsmanlike scene to boast of, I 
know, but we wanted meat or fowl rather and 
we got it. 



28 

At the close of the war Lieutenant Judson re- 
signed from the service, and went up the Yellow- 
stone River in the employ of the Northwest Fur 
Company. He now had a chance such as he had 
long desired to test the wild sports of the West, 
and he improved the opportunity by a vigorous cru- 
sade against the large game of the Rocky Moun- 
tains. At that time the plains were covered with 
vast herds of bison, or buffalo, affording a seemingly 
inexhaustible supply, and large bands of elk were 
encountered daily in the foothills. The fleet and 
wary Rocky Mountain sheep, now nearly exterm- 
inated, peopled the crags and cliffs gazing down 
with intermingled fear and surprise at the unusual 
invaders of the wild region. The antelope could be 
seen dotting the prairie below in all directions and 
the hardy adventurers when penetrating the dense 
thickets occasionally found it necessary to hunt or 
be hunted by the grizzly bear. Ned Buntline here 
found his early dream of border life in the groove 
so nobly filled by Daniel Boone, well-nigh realized. 
Frequent exploring tours into the more remote sec- 
tions, "where man had ne'er or rarely trod,*' gave 
variety and zest to the work. 

After several months the restless nature of the 
young frontiersman led him to seek new scenes and 
perils, and he turned toward the great Southwest as 
a suitable field. About this time he wedded a lovely 
and intellectual young lady whom he met in the 
sunny South, and stimulated anew to the exercise of 



29 

his literary talent he established a bright journal en- 
titled Ned Buntline's Own. The new publication at- 
tracted much attention, as the editor boldly criticised 
the tricks and traps of gamblers and lawless char- 
acters, whom he exposed without fear or favor, 
thereby incurring the deadly enmity of a dangerous 
class. 

As an indication of the invincible courage and dar- 
ing of Ned Buntline, the following incident, pub- 
lished in the columns of the old Knickerbocker 
Magazine, may be appropriately given. 

"Apropos of Ned Buntline: a new contributor 
writing from Natchez on the 25th of November, 
1843, says: By the way, Ned passed through here 
this morning, on his way to Gallatin, thirty miles 
distant. Being on a visit to Eddyville, Ky., a few 
days since, he heard that three persons, charged with 
having committed an atrocious murder near Gallatin 
some time since, were in the woods in the neighbor- 
hood. Arming himself, Ned 'put out' in pursuit of 
them alone. 'He soon overtook them, when two of 
them surrendered, after a short resistance. These 
he tied to trees, and then went on in pursuit of the 
other, who had absconded in the meantime. But the 
fellow had too good a start; and Ned, after firing 
one or two shots after him, gave up the chase. He 
arrived here with his two captives last night in the 
steamer, and as I said before went on to Gallatin 
with them this morning. He has entitled himself 
to the reward of six hundred dollars offered for 
their apprehension. Just like Ned. 



"The foregoing was crowded out of our last num- 
ber; since the publication of which we have heard 
with deep regret of the death of the young and 
lovely wife of our correspondent. Such a loss will 
make him feel the impotency of consolation, yet we 
cannot withhold the expression of our sympathy with 
him in his great bereavement. The 'Life Yarn* will 
be resumed in a subsequent number." 

At this time a stirring serial entitled u Ned Bunt- 
line's Life Yarn," combining the autobiography of 
our hero, with a thread of romance interwoven, was 
running through the pages of the magazine, as in- 
dicated by the editorial comment. At Nashville, 
Tenn., his southern home, he toiled steadily in his 
chosen profession, and his reputation as a writer of 
fiction soon became extensive. But the darkest hour 
of his life was close at hand. The busy tongue of 
malicious gossip was the cause of creating a deadly 
enemy in one who had been a close friend, and this 
led to the fatal affray so widely published at the 
time, and known as the Porterfield affair. The cir- 
cumstances of the sad occurrence were briefly re- 
corded as follows, in the Knickerbocker Magazine, 
April, 1846: 

"There is great reason to fear that before the 
sentences which are now running from our pen shall 
have been placed in type, we shall have heard of 
the death of our frequent and always entertaining 
contributor, 4 Ned Buntline,' late Midshipman E. Z. 



C. Judson, of the United States Navy. We gather 
from the public journals that a difficulty recently 
occurred at Nashville (Tenn.) between our corre- 
spondent and Mr. Robert Porterfield, which led to 
a hostile meeting, in which, after three shots, the 
latter was killed, having been pierced with his an- 
tagonist's bullet in his forehead, just above the eye. 
The events which succeeded are very revolting: 
Judson was arrested, but the excitement was so great 
against him, that when he was taken before the jus- 
tice for examination, it became evident that he would 
be summarily dealt with. Some cried 'shoot him!' 
others 4 han him!' and a brother of the deceased 
shot at him several times; a number of shots were 
fired at him by others, and strange to say, he escaped 
all unhurt, ran off and hid himself in the City Hotel. 
Hundreds of excited persons collected around and 
in the hotel, and after searching some time he was 
found, and endeavoring to escape, he fell from the 
third story to the porch without serious injury. 

"The sheriff then took charge of him and con- 
veyed him to prison, the people now seeming willing 
that the law should take its course. 'After he had 
been committed to jail,' adds another and in some 
particulars different account, 'in an almost dying con- 
dition from his fall, at about ten o'clock at night the 
mob, finding he was still alive, broke into the jail; 
maimed and almost naked they threw him into the 
street to be hung. He asked for a minister, which 
was denied him; he feared not death, but requested 



32 

to be shot, and begged if there was any gentleman 
present he would shoot him. They took him to the 
square, and ran him up over the rail of an awning 
post; the rope broke and he fell; when he was taken 
back to the jail, where he lies to die some time dur- 
ing the night/ 'And this horrible, infamous out- 
rage,' adds the Courier and Enquirer with signifi- 
cant emphasis, 'occurred in the streets and was per- 
formed by the people of Nashville. 1 We have been 
for many months in intimate correspondence with 
Mr. Judson, whom, however, we never met person- 
ally. We have been made the repository of all the 
circumstances of his checkered and eventful life, up 
almost to the time of the occurrence above narrated. 
Of these it will be our province to speak hereafter." 

In the next issue of the magazine the rumor of 
Ned Buntline's death was declared unfounded, and 
the editor published an extract from his letter giving 
a few important details of the affray: 

"We are glad to be able to state that our appre- 
hensions in regard to the death of Mr. Judson (our 
'Ned Buntline') had not at the last advices been 
realized. He writes us himself, under date of 
'Nashville, April loth,' although in a faltering hand, 
as follows: 'Your April number has just reached me, 
and I hasten to tell you that I am worth ten 'dead' 
men yet, and hope to be ready in two or three 
months, to 'go it' for 'the whole of Oregon.' I ex- 
pect to leave here for the East in three or four days. 
I cannot yet rise from my bed; my left arm and leg 



33 

are helpless, and my whole left side is sadly bruised. 
Out of twenty-three shots, all within ten steps, I was 
slightly hit by three only. I fell forty-seven feet 
three inches (measured) on hard, rocky ground, and 
not a bone cracked. Thus GOD told them I was in- 
nocent. As GOD is my judge, / never wronged Rob- 
ert Porterfield. My enemies poisoned his ears, and 
foully belied me. I tried to avoid harming him, and 
calmly talked with him while he fired three shots at 
me, each shot grazing my person. I did not fire till 
I saw he was determined to kill me, and then I fired 
but once. Gross injustice has been done me in the 
published descriptions of the affair. As soon as I 
can sit up I shall publish a full account of the entire 
affray. I shall not be tried; the grand jury have set, 
and no bill has been found against me. The mob 
was raised and composed of men who were my ene- 
mies on other accounts than the death of Porterfield. 
They were the persons whom I used to score in my 
little paper, 'Ned Buntline's Own.' I saw but one 
respectable man among them. The rope did not 
break; it was cut by a friend. I believe I acted 
calmly and bravely through the whole scene; my 
enemies say so, at least. Mr. Porterfield was a 
brave, good, but rash and hasty man; and deeply, 
deeply, do I regret the necessity of his death. . . . 
I am faint and weak from this exertion in writing 
you, and must close/ We have given the foregoing 
to the public without request, and without the per- 
mission of the writer. It seems but just that one 



34 

who so conspicuous an actor in the sad events here- 
tofore recorded, should have the opportunity of as- 
serting his innocence. It could hardly be denied 
him by an enemy." 

Soon after recovering from the effects of this ter- 
rible ordeal, Ned Buntline removed to New York, 
as affording a wider field for his literary labors, and 
he soon became a notable figure in the "Old Guard," 
a term affectionately applied to the corps of gifted 
contributors who rallied to the support of old Spirit 
in its palmiest days. Among the bright lights of 
this coterie was Dr. Alban S. Payne, who has since 
become famous under the nom de plume of "Nicho- 
las Spicer." Dr. Payne and Ned Buntline formed 
a warm mutual friendship, which lasted through life, 
and when together during their early years were 
ever ready for any adventure requiring nerve and 
daring. "Nicholas Spicer" one of the noblest 
membres of the 4 Old Guard* has another claim to 
distinction aside from his literary talent and high 
reputation as a physician. He is the identical man 

"WHO STRUCK BILLY PATTERSON" 

As the writer of this has been favored with the 
true version, from the gallant Spicer himself, the 
history of the famous encounter is worth repeating. 

The quaint and genial "Nicholas Spicer" was at 
that time in the prime of manhood, one of the finest 
amateur athletes of the day, and his feats of 



35 

strength and agility commanded the admiration of 
his associates. 

After graduating with honors, Dr. Alban S. 
Payne joined the American Medical Association, 
where his humor and powers of oratory made him a 
warm favorite. About the year 1848 the Medical 
Association convened at Richmond, Va., and 
"Spicer" attended as was his custom. One night, 
during the "wee sma' hours," the members were re- 
turning from a late session, in solid column to the 
number of twenty-five or thirty; and upon reaching 
the foot of Capital Hill, the door of a well-known 
restaurant flew open, as the redoubtable Billy Pat- 
terson emerged therefrom and sprang out upon the 
pavement. Patterson, a very Hercules in size and 
strength, appeared more formidable than usual, hav- 
ing indulged heavily in "the cup that inebriates" and 
being in one of his worst moods. He evidently re- 
garded the company as a posse of police bent upon 
his arrest, and made a bold stand. 

Pausing an instant to collect his energies, Billy 
Patterson dashed at the head of the column, and by 
sheer strength and weight hurled the disciples of 
-dEsculapius in either direction as he advanced. The 
streets were almost impassable, the result of heavy 
rains, and the members of the profession nearest the 
outer edge of the pavement were sent reeling into 
the gutter. Patterson had utterly routed the front, 
when "Spicer," who was bringing up the rear, re- 
leased his arms from his companion, on either side 
and prepared to meet the burly antagonist. 



-36- 

As Patterson, filled with exultation at his appar- 
ent triumph, found only one man of the rear guard 
to confront him, he aimed a terrific blow at that 
individual; but to his great surprise this was readily 
parried, and the counter blow, a la Yankee Sullivan, 
fell upon his left eye with such force, that, followed 
by a second, the desperado was thrown heavily into 
the street. More dead than alive, he was carried 
into the restaurant, where he was restored to con- 
sciousness, while the interrupted company resumed 
its line of march. 

The next morning "Nicholas Spicer" learned that 
two policemen were on the lookout for the man who 
struck Billy Patterson, and while clear in conscience, 
his distaste for legal proceedings caused him to lay 
the case before a friend at the hotel. Assuring him 
of a speedy cessation of hostilities, this gentleman 
engaged two newsboys to traverse the streets of the 
city, asking every person old or young, "Who struck 
Billy Patterson?" The policemen soon retired, but 
the question was caught up by hundreds of lips, and 
the query soon found a place in the daily journals, 
whence it spread with electric rapidity through all 
parts of the Union. 

This is believed to have been the only fistic en- 
counter in which Billy Patterson was vanquished, but 
it utterly subdued the bravo. It was the first and 
last one, in all probability, of Dr. Payne; yet so fa- 
mous has it been rendered that many will no doubt 



O*7 

~~ 6/ ~ 

be pleased to learn who struck Billy Patterson. 

Having given the reader an idea of "Nicholas 
Spicer's" courage and skill, it may be seen that he 
was a right royal companion for the gallant young 
sailor, adventurer and novelist. In response to a 
request from the writer, Nicholas Spicer has given 
the following personal recollections of Ned Bunt- 
line: 

A MEMOIR, BY "NICHOLAS SPICER." 

I can clearly remember the circumstances attend- 
ing my first meeting and subsequent acquaintance 
with the distinguished novelist, sportsman and trav- 
eler, Col. E. Z. C. Judson "Ned Buntline." The 
whole world knows he was chivalric, and intellectual, 
but few knew as well as does the writer of this, his 
intrinsic worth, his generosity, his goodness of heart, 
and his undying attachment to his friends. He was 
a grand type of the true sportsman in every accep- 
tation of the term. 

He loved his friends dearly, tenderly, and was 
ever ready to lend them a helping hand. He was 
fearless, generous, magnanimous. At times he was 
bold as a lion, at others capable of being "gentle as 
a lamb." In his composition the boldness of true 
manhood was happily blended with the gentleness 
of woman. 

A soul in which the manlier traits 

And gentler, were so blended, 

That none could say where these began, 



-38- 

Or where the others ended 
Alas ! to fitly speak his worth 

All words seem poor and common 
In whose large spirit Nature fused 
The tenderness of a woman." 

In the fall of 1844, I had written a sketch a 
humorous article for the old Spirit of the Times, 
giving a glimpse of New York life as seen by a ver- 
dant young countryman. The article was mentioned 
in very complimentary terms by the genial editor, 
William T. Porter ("York's Tall Son"), and in the 
notice to correspondents there was an invitation to 
call at the office next day. I was then sojourning at 
531 Broadway, corner of Spring street, and was oc- 
cupying, through courtesy, the same office with New 
York's great surgeon, Prof. Lewis A. Sayre, then a 
young but rising man. I dressed myself carefully, 
and with palpitating heart and trembling step pro- 
ceeded to the sanctum of the Spirit of the Times, 
then located in Barclay street. As I entered the 
door I asked: 

"Is Col. Bill Porter at home?" 

"Yes, sir, always at home to my friends," re- 
sponded a full, hearty voice, as the "Tall Spirit- 
six foot four in stature advanced to welcome me. 
Within the rare old sanctum I found a glorious gath- 
ering of talent Henry William Herbert ("Frank 
Forester"); Lewis Gaylord Clark, of the Knicker- 
bocker; Lieut. Dick Meade, father of Gen. Meade 
of Gettysburg fame; Henry Inman, the artist; En- 
sign Edward Z. C. Judson, lately returned from a 



39 

sea voyage ; Dr. T. O. Porter, and Elliott, the por- 
trait painter all of whom were introduced, and the 
acquaintance duly cemented at "Frank's" next door, 
in the usual manner. Just as we were about to take a 
sherry cobbler, Gen. George P. Morris, N. P. Wil- 
lis, of the Mirror, and E. E. Jones, entered and 
joined us. Among them all, York's Tall Son was 
"the center of magnetic attraction." His personal 
popularity and genial magnetism exceeded that of 
any man I ever knew. Before I left I had a long 
talk with Edw. Judson, and he inquired of me all 
about Gen. Walker K. Armistead and family, of 
Virginia, saying he had served in Florida during the 
Seminole War, under Armistead. Just before we 
parted, Judson said, handing me a card: "Should 
you ever need a friend, call on E. Z. C. Judson, and 
your draft shall be honored." This was the first, 
but not the last time I ever met the noble old Roman 
so well known to the reading public in later years 
under the nom de plume of "Ned Buntline." 

Our next meettng and a most opportune one it 
proved to be was in September, 1845, when the 
political horizon was all aglow, and the annexation 
project seemed ripe for consummation in Canada. 
At the solicitation of my friend, George Wallace 
McCrae, of Warrenton, Va., I had joined him on a 
romantic expedition up the St. Lawrence, to Mon- 
treal, the object of the trip being unknown to me 
until well under way. I then learned that the elo- 
quent and eccentric McCrae was bent upon impress- 



40 

ing upon our Canadian cousins the superiority of 
"Benton's mint drops" over the copper coins of the 
British Provinces, and the mutual benefits to accrue 
from annexation with the United States. 

At Montreal he made many enthusiastic converts, 
and left the city in high spirits, bound for Quebec, 
but on board the steamer, while en route, we formed 
the acquaintance of two British officers with whom 
the gallant McCrae became convivial, and finally a 
quarrel seemed imminent over the relative merits 
of English and American soldiers. Several times I 
quieted the conflicting elements, curbing my own 
temper meanwhile, until finally, as McCrae stepped 
out of the room, in response to a call from a friend, 
one of the officers, Capt. A., sneeringly said, sotto 
voce: "See, the Yankee coward is sneaking away." 

McCrae did not overhear the remark, but this 
final insult, following close upon a reflection on Gen. 
Jackson's courage, stung me to frenzy, and I offered 
to meet the boastful Britishers, one or both, with 
any weapons, there or elsewhere. They were taken 
aback at this, but handed me their cards and went 
up on deck. Upon arriving at Quebec McCrae and 
myself stopped at the Albion Hotel, and after a ride 
during the day over the historic plains of Abraham, 
we returned and found two mutual friends awaiting 
us Wm. Henry Tyler, of West Point, and E. Z. C. 
Judson, who, as correspondent of the Knicker- 
bocker, was visiting Canada to witness her grand 
scenery. Just as I passed in to supper a most elab- 



41 

orately dressed officer handed me a voluminous chal- 
lenge from Capt. A , of the Royal Guards, and 

I wrote a prompt acceptance, referring the doughty 
soldier to my friend Judson, for arranging all pre- 
liminaries. At my earnest request my friends prom- 
ised, in event of my falling by my antagonist's bullet, 
that my parents should not be informed I had been 
killed in a duel, but that the report should be: 
"Drowned in the St. Lawrence River." All were 
pledged to secrecy, and no word or rumor of the 
event ever reached my family. The following let- 
ter, written by Dr. Sewall to his friend Dr. Carman, 
of Jamaica, L. I., explains the affair better than I 
can possibly do : 

QUEBEC, Nov. 4, 1845. 

MY DEAR DOCTOR: I was surgeon to Dr. Payne in his 

meeting with Capt. A , Royal Guards, on the 17th day 

of last September. This fight occurred in a secluded spot, 
not far from Falls of Montmorency. The American party 
consisted of the principal, Payne; second, E. Z. C. Judson, 
Hon. G. W. McCrae, Lieut. Wm. H. Tyler and myself, 
acting as surgeon. We found the English party on the 
ground, having arrived, however, only a few moments ahead 
of us. They consisted of five officers with their valet. 

Imagine Payne, slight, graceful, but tall and erect a man- 
ner so unassuming and modest that he might have been mis- 
taken for a fifteen-year-old boy yet cool, calm, serene, with 
stern determination in his eyes, carelessly toying with his 
pistol (although to the observer it was evident he had 
handled a pistol before), confronted by a large, powerfully 
built man, apparently fifty years of age, dressed in full uni- 
form. He is in manner theatrical, and handles his weapon 



42 

in that style. Stern determination can be seen on the coun- 
tenances of both these men. Neither is going to yield until 
badly hurt. They are both waiting for the word the try- 
ing moment has come. E. Z. C. Judson steps forward, and 
in a clear, manly tone says: 

"Gentlemen, are you ready? One, two, " but at the 
word "two" there is a simultaneous report, a moment of in- 
tense suspense; the smoke rolls away, and there stands our 
friend, apparently unhurt, while Capt. A - is seen to 
stagger back, and is caught in the arms of his second, and 
carried to the rear, where he is laid in the shade of a group 
of trees. 

A few moments pass, Payne still standing in his tracks, 

and he says: "Judson, ask if Capt. A desires another 

fire." The question is asked, and the answer comes back, 
"He does not." 

Then, said Judson: "Is there any gentleman on the ground 
who doubts Gen. Jackson's courage?" 

"There is none," was the reply. 

Said Lieut. Tyler: "Is there any gentleman who doubts 
the courage of the officers of the American army?" 

"None," replied the officers. 

McCrae then inquired: "Is there any gentleman present 
who doubts the courage of the Yankee nation ?" 

"None," was the response. 

"Then," said Judson, "the sport will have to stop from 
want of material and we had better get away from here." 

I acted as surgeon for both parties the Englishman not 
thinking one necessary. The ball struck the fifth rib on the 
left side of the Captain, glanced, and I cut it out from un- 
der the latissimus dorsi muscle. Capt. A never knew 

Payne was hit at all, but the Captain's ball struck his right 
thigh, ranged upward and outward, and I cut it out over 
the trochauls major. I can say in truth the conduct of your 
friend under fire was capital, superb. I never saw more 



43 

courteous behavior, or a stronger desire to fight than the 
Americans evinced that day. Indeed, their gentlemanly con- 
duct and desire to fight seemed to strike the English officers 
so forcibly that their feelings became those of admiration in 
place of resentment. 

I applied a strong, hot poultice to Payne's wound that 
night, which took all the soreness out, and the next day he 
was walking around as if nothing had happened. Not so 
the Captain. He was laid up three weeks for repairs. A 
reconciliation took place before we left the grounds, and we 
all returned to Quebec together. 

Yours truly, 

WILLIAM SEWALL, M. D. 

My third memorable meeting with Ned Bunt- 
line not to mention the many social ones of minor 
importance was in the winter of 1845. At this 
period it was dangerous after nightfall to pass 
through that notorious portion of Gotham known as 
the "Five Points," unless protected by policemen. 
Not only robbery, but foul murders were frequent, 
and the locality was carefully avoided by belated 
citizens. One evening I decided to attend a main, 
or "battle royal," on the Bowery, and not wishing 
to go alone I walked down to the Broadway House, 
near Mitchell's Olympic Theater, thinking I would 
meet some of the Spirit family at this popular hos- 
telry. As I entered the door the first man I met 
was Ned Buntline, who, ever ready for an adven- 
ture, gladly consented to go with me. After enjoy- 
ing the sport to a very late hour, we set out on our 
return. As we neared the Five Points we could see a 



44 

crowd gathering on the right-hand sidewalk. They 
seemed to gather from the sound of our steps on 
the pavement, and from their movements it was evi- 
dent they were bent on stopping us. I proposed to 
cross over on the left-hand side, walk fast, and flank 
them, but Ned said: "No! let us advance rapidly 
and boldly right toward them. If they make any 
hostile demonstration we must fire right into them. 1 ' 
When within fifteen feet of them, the rascals 
made a rush at us. Simultaneously our pistols were 
fired, three men were seen to fall, and the rest scat- 
tered in every direction. We reached Broadway, 
and there separated, the lion-hearted Ned going to 
the Broadway House, and I to my lodgings farther 
up town 531 Broadway. About 12 M. next day I 
was in Dr. Sayre's office when a messenger arrived 
asking him to come to see a wounded man at the 
Five Points. He invited me to go with him, and I 
helped to dress the wounds of one of the miserable 
rascals that sought to take my life the night before. 
I have always thought that Ned Buntline and myself 
did as much to reform the Five Points as any of the 
home missionaries in that section. 



CHAPTER^ THREE 



THE NOVELIST'S INTENSE PATRIOTISM 
"NED BUNTLINE OWN" 




ED BUNTLINE'S career in Gotham was a 
succession of stirring incidents, for his rest- 
less and daring nature could never be con- 
tent with the steady routine that marks the 
life of ordinary mortals. The excitement 
of the chase or the "clamorous crowd" was as nec- 
essary to him as food to the famished. He was es- 
sentially a man of action and impulse. Through the 
medium of Ned Buntllne s Own he scourged the law- 
less element of the metropolis, and was the means 
directly and indirectly of bringing to justice many 
of the cunning rascals of the city. The breezy jour- 
nal was the talk of the town, and the editor was 
often in danger of "asault with intent to kill," on 
the part of the shrewdest members at large repre- 
sented in the rogue's gallery. Ned Buntline was 
aware that his life was eagerly sought by scores of 
miscreants, but as the danger increased his spirits 
rose, for he believed that 



- 4 6- 

A single hour of honest strife 
Is worth a year of peaceful life. 

He possessed an untamable and dauntless spirit 
that would have been more in keeping with the age 
of chivalry than the prosaic era in which he lived. 
He was a modern knight errant, hedged in with cus- 
toms uncongenial and formal, yet warring vigor- 
ously against the code of the "unco guid and rigidly 
righteous," while assailing the vices of the metrop- 
olis on the other hand. Thus he was often between 
two fires, and cared no more for the assailants on 
one side than the other. It has been said of him, 
and with justice, that he never feared a foe nor for- 
sook a friend. 

One of his most intimate acquaintances, Mr. E. 
Locke Mason, who was associate editor of Ned 
Buntline's Own, and who, in 1888, married Col. 
Judson's widow thus alludes to the characteristics 
and eccentricities of the novelist: "Ned's life was 
one continuous series of sensations, almost from the 
cradle to the grave, and I verily believe he kicked 
off the coverlets from his little cradle, and fought 
against the rigid rules of decorum with all the ear- 
nestness of a baby monarch. Sensations upon sen- 
sations, riots, shootings, speeches, duels, prisons- 
north and south travels, dramas, yachts, wars, ad- 
ventures and a thousand condiments of this char- 
acter, go together to spice a life that will furnish a 
dish for lovers of wild scenes among Indians, rough 
experiences at sea and startling episodes ashore. I 
am familiar with Ned's early history, and more par- 



47 

ticularly his private life, if he had any, which I 
doubt. He was the hero of a hundred fights and 
the victim of a hundred wrongs. The world, always 
coldly critical, judges of results and does not ana- 
lyze the motives of men. Ned's follies and foibles 
were not concealed by any mask of hypocrisy, but 
were all on the surface, to be seen and criticised, 
while his inherent goodness and tenderness of heart 
could be appreciated by the favored few. He was, 
as all knew, careless and reckless in his habits. He 
never saved a book, a sketch, a scrap or a story of 
his own composition as long as I was his companion 
and correspondent. Moving constantly in war or 
peace new homes romantic abodes; fishing or hunt- 
ing orating on temperance with a sad experience of 
the opposite extreme, fighting Mexicans, Indians or 
44 rebels" on the plains, among the miners on the 
Golden Shores; anywhere, everywhere leaving all 
articles identified with his every movement, when- 
ever he happened to move. The mementoes of 
friends, loved pictures of relatives, camp tools and 
equipage, guns, pistols, swords, clothes trunks and 
boxes innumerable all, all dropped behind or left 
with a friend, or where he last plied his pen, shot 
his gun, or spent his eloquence. Flags, banners, let- 
ters, gifts from institutions he had originated and 
individuals he had benefited; household effects, in 
fact every personal effect, of whatever name or na- 
ture, left to fate, while he pushed on in the restless 
manner of one who had a mission to perform, nni 



would accomplish it at all hazards, if he came out 
naked in the end. Thus was lost to us, to his 
friends, to history, to posterity all or nearly all of 
the data and incidents of his sensational life; which, 
added to what is of public record, would have made 
a remarkable book." The foregoing may be re- 
garded as a graphic pen-picture, in miniature, from a 
master hand. 

Perhaps the most intense and unalterable of Ned 
Buntline's sentiments was his radical Americanism. 
This ruling passion at one time overshadowed all 
others, and the outcome was the organization of the 
true American party, more generally known as the 
"Know Nothings," of which the irrepressible Ned 
was one of the leading spirits and prime movers. 
The party was an important factor in politics, and 
faction fights of the most bitter and relentless char- 
acter were common during its ascendancy. The for- 
eign element assailed the new party vigorously, and 
the radical Americans retaliated in like spirit. Ned 
Buntline was the lion of the day. His pen and 
tongue exercised a potent influence in the cause. Al- 
ways a ready speaker, he rose to the height of im- 
passioned eloquence when advocating the principle 
"America for Americans," and his services were in 
constant demand as the orator of his party. Upon 
such occasions he was frequently interrupted and de- 
nounced by the foreign element, and bloodshed 
seemed almost unavoidable at times, yet the speaker 
never wavered for an instant. 



49 

While making a speech at Portland, during this 
exciting period, he had a ludicrous encounter with a 
huge foreigner, who, backed by a shouting mob of 
followers, seemed bent on silencing him by intimida- 
tion or by force. Jumping upon the platform, with 
an axe-helve in hand, the leader approached Judson 
and told him he could not go on. Mr. Judson very 
coolly asked his name, which was given. Then he 
asked: 

"Have you been naturalized?" 

"Yes, I've been naturalized," shouted the dis- 
turber. 

"Well, I don't believe you have been baptized," 
said Judson; "in the name of the stars and stripes, 
take water" and before the astonished Bombastes 
Fnrioso could resist he was thrown headlong in the 
river which flowed beneath the rear of the platform. 
It was such a surprise to the crowd that it com- 
pletely demoralized them, giving the speaker's 
friends a chance to rally to his assistance. The 
speech was finished without further disturbance. 

In 1848 the strife reached its climax, when Ned 
Buntline was indicted and convicted as one of the 
principals in the celebrated Astor Place riot, grow- 
ing out of the bitter feud between the foreigners 
and the Know Nothings. Judge Charles P. Daly 
sentenced him to one year in the penitentiary, where 
he cheerfully served his term, while still keeping up 
his crusade against Judge Daly and other anti- 
American opponents, through the columns of his 



50 

newspaper. His release from imprisonment on 
Blackwell's Island was celebrated by an enthusiastic 
ovation on the part of his friends and admirers. Six 
white horses, harnessed to a gorgeous open bar- 
ouche, drew him to his home near Abingdon Square, 
and the streets were thonged with men and boys who 
cheered him vociferously, while a cannon thundered 
forth welcome, and a mighty brass band played 
"Hail to the Chief" as the cortege drew up to the 
square. A number of eulogistic speeches rounded 
out the long to be remembered reception to Ned 
Buntline the idol of young America, then as in 
later years. 

Contemporary with the so-called Know Nothing 
party though entirely distinct as an organization, 
and having no political significance or affiliation- 
was the Patriotic Order Sons of America, later rec- 
ognized as a society of vast influence and increasing 
strength. This patriotic order, having for its pri- 
mary objects "the inculcation of pure American prin- 
ciples; the opposition to foreign interference with 
state interests in the United States of America; the 
cultivation of a fraternal love; the preservation of 
the Constitution of the United States, and the propa- 
gation of free education," was first organized in 
Philadelphia, in 1847, an d Ned Buntline was one of 
the founders. The progress of the order was slow, 
and prior to the late war the Camps were confined 
principally if not wholly to the Middle States. At 
the outbreak of the war a general enlistment of the 



members compelled temporary suspension; but in 
1866 it was reorganized upon a more substantial 
basis, and its development has since been phenom- 
enal. To this organization the chivalrous Ned 
Buntline gave his heart and energies, and was ever a 
most devoted believer in its cardinal principles, as 
set forth in the preamble : 

Whereas, The experiences of all ages and all countries dis- 
tinctly showeth, that popular liberty born amid the din of 
battle, baptized in patriot blood, and rocked by the rude 
storms of civil strife demands for its preservation, against 
the rage of party spirit, the wiles of ambition, and the stern 
arm of power, the undivided love of all its votaries and the 
firm determination of all its friends, in an internal struggle 
with all its foes. 

The history of the world most plainly proves that it is 
the business of one generation to sow the seed of which an- 
other reaps the harvest, be it of grain or taxes, of good or 
evil. 

Now, therefore, we, the undersigned, Sons of America 
children of its soil, reared beneath the shadow of its flag, 
loving it as none other can love, and having an interest in 
its future welfare, nearer, truer, deeper than all mankind 
beside, do hereby associate ourselves into an Order for the 
purpose of maturing ourselves in the knowledge and encour- 
aging each other in the practice of our rights and duties as 
citizens of a country in which we are called to exercise 
among our fellow men the common rights of sovereignty. In 
which act of association we severally pledge ourselves to the 
observance and support of the laws of the land, and regu- 
lations of this body, as becomes the sons of freemen, willing 
to submit to the restraints of social order, and acknowledg- 
ing no other bonds but those of duty to our God, our coun- 
try, and ourselves. 



52 

While engaged in editing Ned Buntline's Own, in 
the South and East; and amid the other occupations 
of divers kinds to which he turned his attention, Mr. 
Judson continued to publish, from time to time, stirr- 
ing novels of the kind that first made his nom de 
plume a familiar household word to all lovers of ex- 
citing fiction. To one unfamiliar with his methods 
of literary labor, and his capacity for continuous 
work, the prolific character of his writings must be 
little short of marvelous. When engrossed in writ- 
ing a new story for the press, he plied his pen with 
astonishing rapidity, and scarcely knew any rest until 
his task was completed. 

A friend once inquired how he managed to vlo 
such an amount of literary work, and asked if his 
plots were carefully prepared in advance. He re- 
plied, "I once wrote a book of 610 pages in sixty-two 
hours, but during that time I scarcely ate or slept. 
As to my method I never lay out a plot in ad- 
vance. I shouldn't know how to do it, for how can 
I know what my people may take it into their heads 
to do? First I invent a title, and when I hit on a 
good one I consider the story about half finished. It 
is the thing of prime importance. Then I take a 
bound book of blank paper, set my title at the head 
of it, and begin to write about the fictitious charac- 
ter who is to be the hero of it. I push ahead as fast 
as I can write, never blotting out anything I have 
once written, and never making a correction or 
modification. If you will examine the leaves of 



-53 

manuscript you will see that the pages are clean, 
with no erasures no interlineations. If a book 
does not suit me when I have finished it, or at any 
stage of its progress, I simply throw it in the fire, 
and begin again without any reference to the dis- 
carded text. When I speak, as I frequently do on 
political topics, temperance, or any other subject, I 
talk straight on, as I write, without notes or any 
previous preparation." 

Many of his romances appeared in the columns 
of the New York Mercury, the Knickerbocker 
Magazine, and his own periodical, and the greater 
portion of these were afterward published in book 
form, to meet the demand of the public always 
eager to read Ned Runtime's charming sea tales, and 
equally thrilling novels of border life. One of his 
friends, Commodore L. A. Beardslee better known 
to the sportsmen of America over his signature of 
"Piseco" says of the influence and impressive nat- 
ure of these faithful pictures of life at sea: 'Time 
after time, when passing through some of the vicissi- 
tudes of sea-life, I have recalled, by a flash of mem- 
ory as though I myself had been there before 
some of his descriptions which fitted. I have re- 
called, in gales at sea, in the rivers and jungles of 
Africa, of Central and South America, and when 
cruising in the Caribbean Sea, along the Isle of 
Pines, Tortugas, and other buccaneering resorts 
made famous by him, the adventures and scenes of 
his creation. 11 



Another gentleman, now a prominent patron of 
literature and art, relates that in early youth, having 
read nearly all the sensational tales of the prolific 
writer, he once enjoyed the inexpressible pleasure of 
gazing upon the novelist, and on informing his 
school-mates that he "had seen Ned Buntline," the 
awe and admiration of his fellows for one thus fav- 
ored by a passing glimpse of their hero and idol, 
knew no bounds. For many days after he was the 
acknowledged leader among his playmates, who re- 
garded him as one that had seen a supernatural be- 
ing the great and only Ned Buntline. 




CHAPTER^ FOUR 

LIFE IN THE ADIRONDACKS- 
A HUNTER'S HOME 



Where the silvery gleam of the rushing stream 
Is so brightly seen o'er the rocks dark green, 
Where the white pink grows by the wild red rose 
And the blue bird sings till the welkin rings. 

Where the red deer leaps and the panther creeps, 
And the eagles scream over cliff and stream, 
Where the lilies bow their heads of snow, 
And the hemlocks tall throw a shade o'er all. 
Where the rolling surf laves the emerald turf, 
Where the trout leaps high at the hovering fly, 
Where the sportive fawn crops the soft green lawn, 
And the crows' shrill cry bodes a tempest nigh 
There is my home my wildwood home. 

Where no step intrudes in the dense dark woods, 
Where no song is heard but of breeze and bird ; 
Where the world's foul scum can never come; 
Where friends are so few that all are true 
There is my home my wildwood home. 

Ned Buntline. 




- 5 6- 

HE so-called charms of civilization were 
literally chains to one of Ned Runtime's 
roving nature, and it is not surprising that 
after a sojourn of a few years in New 
York, he began to chafe under the restraint 
and formality of city life, and to cast about for an 
opportunity to return to the wilderness. In a letter 
to the writer, several years ago, he remarked that he 
had no love for cities, but was always happiest 
when far removed from civilization, surrounded by 
woods and waters, where the carol of birds, the 
whisper of the breeze, and the roar of the cascade, 
awoke sweeter music to his ear than all the sym- 
phonies of Beethoven. His natural distaste for 
city life became intensified during his residence in 
New York and Philadelphia, as the convivial habits 
there formed came near wrecking the stalwart 
woodsman, and he determined to break away from 
the dangerous surroundings and influences. 

To think was to act with Ned Buntline, and he 
quietly "folded his tent like the Arab, and as silently 
stole away, n to the wilds of the Adirondack region, 
then known to the public under the name of John 
Brown's tract. The region was famous only as the 
retreat of the visionary "old man of Ossawatomic," 
and few were aware of the fact that it was a para- 
dise of fish and game. Upon reaching this wild 
locality Ned was once more in his element, and di- 
vided his time pretty equally between the enjoyment 
of field sports and the writing of sensational stories 



57 

for the press. The spot selected for his hermitage 
in the wilderness, which he christened u The Eagle's 
Nest/' a romantic retreat, glowingly described in 
his little poem of that title was near the bank of 
Eagle Lake, one of the three now known as the Blue 
Mountain lakes. He gave the place and many of 
the lakes and streams in that region the names they 
now bear, and in his humble cabin lived as happy as 
a prince, entertaining his friends who visited the 
wilderness, with the proverbial hospitality of a true 
knight of the trigger. 

Mr. Chauncey )Hathorn, who has long been fami- 
liar with almost every phase of Adirondack life, fur- 
nishes the following brief description of Ned Bunt- 
line's first appearance in that region, and the circum- 
stances which led him to make it his home : 

"In the fall of 1856, I, with a party of friends 
from Saratoga, visited the woods for a hunting ex- 
cursion, intending to remain some time, and located 
at what is now Eagle Lake. Finding there a log 
house and clearing which had been made for lumber- 
ing purposes, we occupied it by permission. The 
party returned home about New Years day, and I 
remained with two woodsmen, one of whom had been 
a guide for Ned at Lake Piseco some time before. 
On our return to camp one day we found Ned, with 
a party he had picked up at Glens Falls. They had 
made their way in with a team on the rude road. 
When we come in Ned made himself known, and I 
said to him: *I am glad to meet you. I know you 



-58- 

well, having read all your books, and was also a 
subscriber to Ned Buntline's Own.' From this time 
ever after he was a firm and genial friend. 

"The place where we were was soon after offered 
for sale, and he lost no time in finding the owner, 
who sold it to him at a moderate price. His party 
remained a week and then went out, Ned leaving me 
in charge of the place until he should return in the 
spring, to make it his literary and mountain home. 
After his return I was called home, and Ned ac- 
companied me to the outskirts of the woods, urg- 
ing me to soon return and live with him and be 
his guest as long as I wished. He desired a 
housekeeper, and I recommended to him a bright, 
comely girl, Marie Gardiner, whom he employed 
and soon afterward married. Before I returned she 
died. A few evergreens mark the resting place of 
the mother and child at the Eagle's Nest. 

"My health being poor, from close confinement to 
business, I decided to go again to the woods, and in 
the spring of 1859 I made my way up to the Lakes, 
where Ned gave me a cordial greeting. There were 
two eagles that made their nest each year opposite 
the house on the lake, and we never disturbed them. 
Their close proximity pleased him, and he named his 
home the Eagle's Nest, and the sheet of water, 
Eagle Lake. It is about one mile long, and a lovely 
lake. The one below, and the last of the chain, he 
named, Utawanna, which signifies sunshine. Upon 



59 

naming this lake he composed some beautiful lines, 
only a portion of which I now remember, namely : 

Where the swift trout leapeth freely, 

Where the wild rose blushing blossoms 

Where the red deer stoops to drink, 

On its mossy covered brink; 

Not a human dwelling near it 

Tis a gem in living green 

Utawanna, Queen of waters, 

In thy heavenly silver sheen. 

"At this time Ned was writing stones for the 
New York Mercury, and Mr. Cauldwell, the senior 
editor, made us a visit, and I became well acquainted 
with him. The editor and publisher was a warm ad- 
mirer of Ned Buntline, and paid him liberally, as the 
public demand for his wild and fanciful stories made 
a great circulation for the Mercury. He wrote 
short stories for other papers, under various signa- 
tures, one of his pseudonyms being "Ethelbert, the 
Wanderer." His income from his writings, when he 
was faithful to his work, would amount to several 
thousand dollars per year, but after completing a 
long serial story or fulfilling a literary engagement, 
he would often indulge in a period of dissipation 
though he would strive vigorously to conquer the 
besetting weakness, and finally succeeded in doing 
so, I believe, and became a strong temperance ad- 
vocate. 

"The natives of the country looked upon him as a 
wonderful man. His scars and wounds attested the 
desperate encounters he had engaged in, and won- 



6o 

dcrful stories were told of his courage and prowess 
which were in truth remarkable. He was very 
fond of shooting and fishing. Wild deer were very 
abundant, and might often be seen from his door, 
feeding in day time. He wrote but little during the 
day, but at night, after a drink of strong coffee, 
would do his writing when all was quiet. He had a 
post office established at his Eagle's Nest, and he 
employed a mail carrier to come in on foot each 
week, a distance of twenty-eight miles, and change 
the mails. 

u ln 1860 Ned made a trip to New York, leaving 
me to look after his home, and not long after a 
messenger came to ask me to meet the irrepressible 
Ned, and assist him in bringing home a wife he had 
just married. I met them, and it fell to my lot to 
take the bride to her home in a boat, while Ned 
went with the teamster around the road. The lady 
at once began to question me in regard to her future 
home of which she had formed a somewhat roman- 
tic idea apparently expecting a find a mansion in 
the wilderness. As mildly as possible I gave a 
clearer view of the cabin home, taking especial care 
to describe the beautiful scenery, and the woman 
gracefully accepted the situation. She was good 
looking and intelligent, but the marriage proved an 
unhappy one, and trouble soon commenced which 
only ended when Ned left for the war. 

u Ned Buntline had some excellent traits of char- 
acter. His friendship was fervid and sincere, he 



6i 

despised gambling and profane language, and 
would never employ any one who would use it in 
his presence." 

Although generous and hospitable almost to a 
fault, he required due respect should be shown on 
the part of his guests, and certain simple rules must 
be complied with. There must be no hounding of 
deer on or across his premises, and no game butcher 
would be entertained at the Eagle's Nest. It is said 
that one of the guides, Alvah Dunning, boasted that 
he should set his hounds after deer in the vicinity of 
Ned Buntline's home at the first opportunity, and 
made the threat that in case of interference he 
would shoot the man who should attempt to stop 
him. This threat was repeated to Ned, who soon 
after detected Alvah crossing the little domain, and 
at once intercepted him. Two of the guide's hounds 
accompanied him, and foreseeing danger, he called 
them to heel. Ned very coolly raised his rifle and 
shot one of the dogs so close to Alvah that the bullet 
whistled uncomfortably near, then warned the in- 
truder that another bullet would be ready for him 
if he were not out of sight in five minutes. Alvah 
disappeared from view within one minute, running 
at a rate of speed never before equalled by man in 
that region, and he was never again known to set 
foot on the domain of u Ned Buntline, the terrible." 

Another incident, related by an intimate friend, 
indicates the spirit of true sportsmanship and love 



62 

of fair play, on the part of the rare old woodsman. 
One evening two skiffs were rowed up to his land- 
ing, and the occupants two wealthy young sports- 
men, accompanied by their guides, put their shoot- 
ing accoutrements on shore, depending upon putting 
in a pleasant night at the Eagle's Nest. The owner 
of the cabin came down and welcomed the belated 
hunters. From the bow of each boajt protruded the 
saddles of a deer, and espying them Ned Buntline 
asked where they were shot. With a glow of con- 
scious pride the young sportsmen informed him, and 
added that a few more deer had been killed the day 
previous, all by floating. "Where are they?" asked 
Ned. "Oh! they were does and a fawn and we 
left them on the bank as we had no "Hold on," 
cried the veteran woodsman at this point, interrupt- 
ing the speaker, and directing the guides to reload 
the boat he compelled the game butchers to seek 
other quarters. Entreaties were in vain, and as the 
boats were pushed off he delivered a lecture to the 
occupants on the enormity of their offence against 
fair sportsmanship which they doubtless remem- 
bered ever after. 

The novelist had no cause to complain of monot- 
ony while living in the great North Woods of New 
York. Adventures seemed to follow each other 
with surprising frequency, and he found his rifle con- 
venient for almost daily use. One of his exploits 
he recorded as follows, under the title of 



A WOLF MASSACRE 

It was the winter of 1858. I was up in my hunter's cabin 
on Eagle Lake, the second of the Blue Mountain trio of 
crystal beauties. Cold was no name for the weather. The ice 
froze to over two feet thickness in November. By the first 
of January it was near four feet through, as we found when 
we cut holes through which to fish for salmon, trout. Thirty 
to forty degrees below zero was the average. 

Yet there came a sudden thaw in January it only lasted 
a couple of days, but it left the deep snow crusted heavily 
and the lakes a glare of smooth ice as soon as the cold was 
renewed. 

The settlers were few and far between in those days 
most of them trappers and guides by profession, and such a 
thing as "crusting" deer or moose was unheard of. The 
backwoodsmen were as honest and manly as they were brave 
and true. 

One day in January, my hounds, chained up in their warm 
dog-house, made a great fuss, and looking out on Eagle Lake 
in front of my log dwelling I saw a noble buck, a regal 
giant of the forest, attempting to cross its glittering surface. 
He was over half way across, slipping, falling and sliding 
on, when I went out. He did not seem to fear me, though 
he must have seen me. I believe the old fellow knew no 
white man would shoot him out of season, and was actually 
coming in for protection. For as I looked at him I heard a 
series of howls across the lake, and knew that a big gang of 
wolves was on the trail of the deer. 

I hurried in and got my rifle, an Ogden double-barrel, 
made in Oswego, carrying a 32 to the pound conical ball. 
By the time I had got it and my ammunition ready, and 
rushed down to a clump of cedars on the lake-side, the 
noble buck was within two hundred yards of the shore and 
doing his uttermost to get there, for the wolves were al- 
most up to him. 



-64- 

. Two or three tremendous leaps brought him within easy 
rifle range, one hundred yards, but the accursed wolves, at 
least twenty in number, were on him, and in a second he 
was down, with every jaw fastened in him that could find a 
place to bite. 

Oh! if I had then had the glorious "Old Reliable" that 
now stands in one corner of my sanctum, I believe I could 
have killed every wolf in the gang before they knew what I 
was doing, while, they, half-starved, were gorging on their 
prey. 

As it was, while they were plunging, growling and tear- 
ing the poor animal to pieces, I sent in shot after shot, as 
fast as I could load and fire. 

It was not until nine of their number were dead or dis- 
abled that the wolves found out they were in an unhealthy 
neighborhood, and several of these limped away when they 
went at last, leaving a bloody trail on the glittering ice. 

In that brief time that deer was so nearly devoured that 
you couldn't find a bone that was not broken or a bit of 
meat big enough for a bulldog's swallow. And some of thr 
dead wolves had their hides torn so badly they were almost 
worthless by the numerous jaws of their mates in the blind, 
mad struggle for a feast. 

I did not make much on my wolf hunt besides the fun of 
killing them and avenging the noble buck. There was no 
bounty on wolves, though I got ten dollars a head on three 
panthers shot a little later. 

Ah, what a change from then and now ! The woods were 
full of deer; moose, though not plenty, were often seen, and 
trout, speckled and salmon, were so plenty that twenty min- 
utes' fishing any time, and almost anywhere, would feed a 
half dozen hearty men for the day. 

Shot-guns were never heard of rifles were our only 
weapons, and a red rag or a bit of venison just as good as 
a whole book of flies, for all practical purposes, in trouting. 



-6 S - 

It makes me sick to go there now. A lover of Nature and 

Nature's gifts shudders at the advance of dudes and their 

fancy accessories. Hunters and anglers go beyond civiliza- 
tion, if they know themselves. 

On another occasion he very narrowly escaped 
with his life, when his cabin burned to the ground 
one bitter ci Id winter's night, as related in a com- 
munication to one of the *sporting journals a few 
years later. Of this experience he gives a very vivid 
description, entitled, 

BURNED OUT 

I had gone up for my Fall deer shooting, and finding a 
hunter's cabin, evidently long unused, near the head of In- 
dian River, I made up my mind to test a Winter there or 
as much of it as I could stand. I had an old guide who could 
pack his hundred and twenty pounds at a time, and by his 
aid I had such stores as I needed packed in before the snows 
were deep. The cabin, built against and partly under a 
rocky ledge, was made of spruce logs, covered with hem- 
lock bark, and had a door, rude, but sufficient, made of a 
couple of split slabs, standing upright. Windows were not 
needed there were air holes enough between the logs de- 
spite the moss stuffing we put in. 

Inside I had a small sheet-iron camp-stove, which could 
be made red-hot with a double handful of birch bark. Out- 
side, old Birch, my guide, cut and piled about twelve or fif- 
teen cords of birch, beech and maple wood of large size for a 
camp-fire when I wanted it. There was plenty of dead tim- 
ber lying around loose on the banks of the little lake near 

The Turf, Field and Farm (1882), when the offices of the 
well-known sportsmen's journal were burned in the fire which 
consumed the old World building on Park Row, New York. 



66 

camp, so I had no danger of a freeze-out. I had snow-shoes 
to travel with when I desired, and when he left Birch was 
to come in every two weeks to bring my mail and carry out 
manuscript, for I worked there, as I always do wherever I 
am, penfully. 

For the first six weeks after Winter set in I had a glor- 
ious time. Hermit life just suited me. I had plenty to eat 
and drink, good reading matter, and all of out-doors to my- 
self when 1 wanted exercise. Writing sketches and stories 
filled up the intervals. 

Almost every night I had a concert. A gang of wolves 
played the principal part. A panther solo made the varia- 
tion. I was happy. No temptation to deviate from the 
rules of health and morality appeared. I was at church every 
day. The blue arch of heaven was its dome, the great pines 
and maples and birch trees formed its columns, the lofty 
hills, the voiceless lake, the singing rills which never froze, 
its lessons the contemplation of the God-created forest its 
sermons. 

But I went to sleep and pleasant dreams one night at an 
early hour to wake at or near midnight under a light as 
brilliant as a salamander could desire. Some spark from 
my slender stove pipe must have fallen on the half rotten 
roof back of the straw covering in front, under the rocks. A 
fierce north wind that was blowing most likely fanned it to 
life, and when I woke fire was above and all around me, 
for fire had dropped from above on my bedding, and it was 
ablaze as I sprung to the door. 

I had only time to snatch my rifle, ammunition, clothes 
and snow-shoes from a corner not yet afire and get outside, 
when the hut was all ablaze. 

I dressed out on the crust, with the themometer away be- 
low zero, but did not feel the cold in the excitement. After 
I was in my thick woolen clothes, and my moose-skin mocca- 
sins on, I began to think of many things inside that I might 



-6 7 - 

have got out and needed. But it was too late. They had 
gone where your noble library has gone, to ashes. 

Sadly I looked on the fire till it smouldered down, keeping 
warm as I sat on my unconsumed wood-pile, and then by the 
early light of the morning star I laid my course for the little 
hamlet of Lake Pleasant, about thirty miles away. I was 
traveling "light" on an empty stomach, snow-shoeing was 
fair, and I got there to dinner. 

I never tried complete hermit life since. I was then and 
there cured of all desire for it. 





CHAPTER^ FIVE 

NED BUNTLINE IN THE CIVIL WAR 

OON after the outbreak of the late Civil 
War, the gallant Ned Buntline, whose love 
for the stars and stripes had been tested on 
the battlefields of Mexico, and the earlier 
Seminole war, again enlisted under the 
Union flag, and served with credit and distinction in 
the hotly-contested battles of the terrible, and, as it 
has been termed, "irrepressible conflict." I Us for- 
mer experience in border warfare, his intrepid cour- 
age, coolness and daring combined to fit him admira- 
bly for the position which was soon assigned to him 
that of "chief of scouts/ 1 with the rank of colonel. 
The dashing spirit and manner of Colonel Judson 
inspired his soldiers with confidence and admiration, 
and it is recorded that his nerve and gallantry, 
backed by the brave bordermen under his command, 
proved victorious by unexpected assaults against 
superior numbers. He was essentially a fighter of 
the hurricane order, and re-enacted on several oc- 
casions, though on a smaller scale, the impetuous, 



-69- 

resistless charges so characteristic of Sheridan and 
Custer. On the other hand, where caution and 
strategy were required, Colonel Judson was equal to 
the emergency, and his knowledge of the Indian and 
guerilla mode of warfare often enabled him to check 
the ravages of the vindictive fighters of the frontier. 
During the terrible strife Colonel Judson was un- 
consciously laying the foundation for greater fame 
and fortune as a writer of fiction. It was during 
this period, and at the close of the war, that he 
formed the intimate acquaintance of the brave scouts 
of the border, James B. Hickock, "Wild Bill;" Wil- 
liam F. Cody, "Buffalo Bill;" Capt. Jack Crawford; 
J. B. Omohundra, u Texas Jack," and other daring 
heroes of the West, who afterward figured promi- 
nently in his most successful novels. In his spirited 
reminiscences of the war, scattered through the 
pages of many periodicals of the day, Ned Buntline 
has given graphic pen pictures of the times that lit- 
erally tried men's souls. The following sketch, orig- 
inally contributed by our hero to the columns of the 
Turf, Field and Farm, gives a glimpse of the grim 
glory of war: 

A WAR-TIME REMINISCENCE 

Meeting, not long ago, to my great delight, one of your 
old subscribers and best friends, Major Schiefrelin, of the 
great drug firm of W. H. Schieffelin & Co., recalled an 
incident very memorable in his life and mine. He was the 
third major in Gen. Charles C. Dodge's First N. Y. 
Mounted Rifles, and joined the regiment about the same 



70 

time that I had the honor of taking saddle with as fine a 
body of men as ever touched spur to flank. 

The day I reached the regiment, early in 1862, there was 
a reconnoisance ordered to feel of the enemy on the lines of 
the Blackwater, and to make a push toward Petersburg to 
see what his strength was. There was a brigade of infantry 
under General Wessels; a section of Battery L, regular 
United States artillery, under Lieut. Beecher; the howitzer 
battery of First Mounted Rifles under Fairgraves, and the 
First Mounted Rifles under Col. Dodge, afterward a general 
when only twenty-three years of age, and the finest-looking 
man that I ever saw in the saddle. Six feet two in height, 
elegantly formed, with a classic, fearless face, a splendid 
horseman, he looked every inch the soldier. He had already 
served abroad in the Queen's Light Guards, the finest cav- 
alry in England. 

When within half a mile of Blackwater Bridge the com- 
mand was halted in a depression near a stream, scouts sent 
ahead and the enemy discovered in force across the Black- 
water, with a long range of masked rifle pits beyond the 
abutments of the bridge, which, with the steam saw mill at 
that point, they had burned. 

The undersigned volunteered alone to find where the en- 
emy was, and did find them, rather suddenly. They were so 
well masked that he gained the river bank above the ruins 
of the mill, rode down to the water's edge and skirted along 
the shore to the east abutment of the bridge, without seeing 
a man, or anything but a thick growth of bushes on the 
high bank just beyond the river there very deep and about 
100 or 130 feet wide. The bridge had been a wooden struc- 
ture, single span. 

Just as the rider reached the foot of the abutments, a 
single confederate officer rose among the bushes and 
shouted : 

"Halt, you d d Yank! Halt and surrender!" 



"Not much!" I replied. We were almost in pistol shot, 
and all was so still an ordinary tone of voice was audible. 
"Not quite ready!" 

"Fire!" he yelled. 

And at that every bush seemed to have covered a man, for 
full two hundred riflemen poured a concentrated volley on 
me. The depression from the high bank to where I sat in 
my saddle was full thirty degrees, and every shot went over 
my head. The air seemed hot with bullets; but nary a 
scratch to me or my horse. But the way that horse went 
over the bank and out of range was a caution to those who 
practice electric locomotion. 

To ride back, report to the commanding officer, and get 
to the mounted rifles was quick work. 

The Thirty-ninth Illinois and Twenty-sixth Ohio were 
ordered forward as a skirmish line, two companies of the 
Mounted Rifles dismounted, with their Sharpe's carbines, 
and Beecher's section of Battery L, two guns, sent forward. 

The writer was given a special squad of sharp shooters 
from the Rifles to feel the way, place the artillery and do 
about as he pleased. 

He gave Beecher his points, showed him by two tall trees 
the limits, so far as he had seen, of the enemy's line, and 
while the battery galloped to a spot masked by bushes not 
four hundred yards from the enemy, the infantry named ad- 
vanced in treble skirmish line, cautiously, under cover. 

When I had ridden back I had seen close to the east abut- 
ment of the bridge, near a rail fence, a huge sycamore tree, 
a splendid cover. With six men from Company C, I think, 
and two from A, I made a rush for that tree, and we reached 
it unharmed, I made the men lie down and hand me up a 
loaded rifle when mine was emptied. They were hidden by 
the large trunk entirely. The opposite bank was now al- 
most a sheet of fire, though few men could be seen, they 
were so well masked. Our skirmishers were sending in 
lead hot and fast. 



72 

Beechcr opened fire with his two rifled guns, but his shot 
(shrapnel he was using) went forty feet too high. 

One of my men, Corporal Kane, now, I think, in New 
York, crept back and told Beecher from me how much de- 
pression was needed to reach their works. 

Meanwhile Lieutenant Whcelan, brother of our then 
Major Wheclan, who is now a senior captain in the Second 
regular United States cavalry, Gen. Augur's old regiment, 
tried to creep through the rail fence to reach my tree, from 
behind which I was firing as often as I could see a man on 
the other side. 

Poor Wheelan was shot through the throat as he raised 
his head to speak to me. 

Amid a shower of bullets two of the heroes, who had 
held the tree with me all this time, caught him, dragged him 
through the fence and keeping in the tree line, carried him 
to the rear, where he died in a few minutes. And now I 
saw Schieffelin for the first time under fire. 

He had ridden up on hearing that Wheelan was shot, and 
there he sat in his saddle, his plumed hat over his fair young 
face, a blue cloak with its red lining, thrown back over his 
shoulder, curiously looking at the enemy's works, just as 
Beecher's battery got in its work at the right elevation. A 
soldier myself, of two long, hard wars, used to fire, knowing 
that he was for the first time under fire, I watched him 
with a curiosity that made me forget any danger myself, 
though several bullets grazed me where I stood. Bullet 
after bullet whistled over and about him, and he did not 
seem to mind them a bit, until an officer in the Thirty-ninth 
Illinois gave him a caution, and was hit himself a second 
after. 

"This is war, is it? rather hot, but they don't kill every 
shot." was his cool remark, made within ten feet of me as 
he turned his horse and rode back slowly to the battalion. 



73 

Ten minutes later the battery had shelled the enemy back, 
and the Eleventh Pennsylvania cavalry, Col. Spear, having 
come up, a regular cavalry charge was ordered, and both 
commands, the rifles leading, swam the river, captured the 
enemy's works, chased the force, superior to our own, nearly 
to Ivor, a large intrenched camp, and then turning to the 
right captured the picket guards at Joiner's Ford, seven miles 
above, and rejoined the infantry at the Isle of Wight court 
house. 

Surgeon Boyd, of the One Hundred and Twelfth New 
York was along as a volunteer, and his horse wouldn't swim 
worth a cent. If he is living perhaps he will tell your readers 
who pulled him from his saddle and landed him on the right 
side of Jordan, where he found his horse in time to keep 
up with the command. 

I'd like to see that old sycamore. I'll bet, if it yet stands, 
and has not been hacked at, that twenty pounds of bullets, 
shot at the head and shoulders of the writer that was all 
the target they had can be found in that tree. 

I have never ceased to regret that Gen. Dodge and Major 
Schieffelin did not remain in the service. They would have 
held their own and more they were all dash and courage. 
But business calls, matrimony, and an aversion to the politi- 
cal promotions they had to wince under men whose service 
as ward politicians gave them political preference did the 
work, and both resigned, with glory waiting to crown their 
brows. They were idolized by the men under them, who 
would have followed them to death without drawing rein. 

This is but a desultory sketch, a pleasant memory of hot 
work, but it is yours. If the major would only give it he 
could describe the affair far better than 'tis here recorded. 



CHAPTER^ SIX 

UNJUST IMPRISONMENT OF 
NED BUNTLINE 




NOTHER episode in the war record of 
Colonel Judson, which has been incorrectly, 
if not maliciously, distorted, was the period 
of temporary incarceration at Fort Hamil- 
ton. The true version of this affair has 
been recently given by Major T. P. McElrath, the 
popular writer of war stories, as follows : 

Happening to encounter recently a newspaper account of 
the exploits of the late Edward Z. C. Judson more popu- 
larly known to the past generation by his nom de plume of 
"Ned Buntline" the author of some of the most blood-curd- 
ling, hair-raising novels in American literature, it flashed 
upon my memory that the novelist had once been a prisoner 
in my special custody at Fort Hamilton, New York Harbor. 
The post was not utilized during the war as a military pris- 
on, nor is its history associated with the records of captives, 
famous or infamous, as military or civilian opponents of 
the nation's integrity as are those of Forts Lafayette, Mon- 
roe, Warren, McHenry and Jefferson. Nevertheless, within 
an interval of a few months three men were incarcerated in 
Fort Hamilton, all of them soldiers, and all three arrested 



75 

by the unusual exercise of arbitrary power without the pre- 
ferment of charges against them which would have insured 
them the benefit of trial by court martial. As the whole cir- 
cumstances of these cases have never found their way into 
public print, many of their attendant facts being known only 
to myself, it occurred to me that their recital might consti- 
tute an interesting contribution to the history of that period. 

The first of the three individuals referred to was an officer 
of high rank whose ability in both military and civilian 
branches of service prior to and since the war of the rebel- 
lion earned for him world-wide distinction. In the second 
Army Register of 1861, issued after the first reorganization 
of the regular army, the name of Charles P. Stone appears 
seventh in rank in the list of brigadier generals of volun- 
teers, Generals Porter, Franklin and W. T. Sherman being 
his immediate predecessors and U. S. Grant being ten "files" 
below him. General Stone's career, including his still unex- 
plained imprisonment of over six months' duration, is too 
familiar to the American people to require detailed relation 
in this sketch. I have felt constrained, however, to make this 
brief allusion to him from the circumstance that after having 
been the first man, who, in January, 1861, was mustered 
into service for the defense of the national capital, he be- 
came a few months later the first military prisoner confined 
during the war in Fort Hamilton. He was arrested at mid- 
night on the 8th of February, 1862, while commanding a 
corps of 12,000 men in Virginia, and was placed in close 
captivity and a cold ear turned to his demands for an ex- 
planation of the outrage. 

Fort Lafayette was the prison to which he was consigned 
and his custodian was the sturdy Martin Burke, lieutenant 
colonel of the Third United States artillery, a strict military 
obstructionist, who earned for himself a wide-spread fame 
by the grim literalness which he displayed in managing the 
hospitalities of that isolated and dreaded "bastile." No 



- 7 6- 

charges were ever preferred against General Stone, and about 
the middle of July, 1862, he received permission to take 
quarters at Fort Hamilton on the neighboring main land, 
which his wife and daughter were allowed to share with 
him. Finally, on August 16th, he was abruptly turned 
loose, being fully released from arrest, though nearly another 
year elapsed before Secretary Stanton permitted him to again 
assume command in the field. During his few weeks' resi- 
dence at Fort Hamilton he was very popular with the officers 
of the garrison whose sympathies were naturally brought into 
play by the mysterious irregularity of his captivity. To the 
youngsters of the "mess" it was a treat to witness the genial 
courtesy which uniformly marked his association with them, 
while his soldier's dignity furnished them a desirable model 
for imitation. The subsequent distinguished career of Gen- 
eral Stone has recently been exhaustively related in the news- 
papers, through the interest excited by his sudden and unex- 
pected death in New York during the last week of Janu- 
ary, 1887. 

The two successors of General Stone as prisoners in Fort 
Hamilton were men of a wholly different type. 'My recol- 
lection of them was revived by the newspaper paragraphs 
referred to above, which contained an inaccurate and inade- 
quate statement regarding an episode in Mr. Judson's career 
that has never to this writing been related. The writer of 
that article summed up his subject's war record in the fol- 
lowing words: "During the war he was arrested and con- 
fined in Fort Lafayette for overstaying his parole." That 
is rather too scanty a recognition of his services in the army, 
and moreover it is not true. As a matter of fact Judson 
was never confined in Fort Lafayette. His single experience 
as a prisoner of consequence during his military career re- 
lated solely to a captivity in Fort Hamilton during the sum- 
mer of 1863. At that time the "military post of the city 
and harbor of New York," with headquarters at Fort Ham- 



--77 

ilton, was commanded by Brevet Brigadier General Harvey 
Brown, Colonel of the Fifth United States artillery the 
brave and skillful officer, who, a few weeks subsequent to 
the occurrences related in this sketch rescued the city of New 
York from the hands of the largest and most evil-disposed 
mob that has ever come to the surface in the United States. 
The "post" comprised all the forts and military commands 
in the vicinity of New York, excepting Governor's Island 
and Fort Lafayette, besides the hospital and convalescent de- 
pots at David's, Hart's and Riker's Islands. The garrison 
of this "post," exclusive of the New York headquarters and 
staff of Gen. Wall, who commanded the department of the 
East, was composed of the headquarters and two mounted 
batteries of the Fifth United States artillery, battalions of 
several regiments of regular infantry which had been sent 
North to replenish their forces decimated in McClellan's 
peninsular campaign, and some volunteer regiments recently 
reorganized after having been mustered out at the end of 
their original two years' enlistment. General Brown had 
an office in Grand street, in New York, and had organized a 
military patrol for the city in the shape of a volunteer com- 
pany which he designated the invalid corps, and which was 
the object of his special and affectionate solicitude. 

One fine afternoon in the early summer of 1863 a corporal 
of the invalid corps, with a file of men escorting a prisoner, 
reported to me at Fort Hamilton, where I was serving as 
post quartermaster. The captive was a tall, broad-shoul- 
dered handsome man, wearing a combination of civilian's and 
soldier's costume, and bearing himself with the air of a 
man accustomed to command rather than obey. With him 
I received a note from Gen. Brown, in New York, directing 
me briefly to lock the prisoner in a casemate and to keep 
the key carefully in my own pocket. An empty casemate 
recently vacated by a departing officer of the garrison was 
selected for the purpose, and was hastily furnished with an 



- 7 8- 

iron bedstead, a couple of chairs and a few other conveni- 
ences from my own quarters, furnished apartments for stran- 
gers not being provided at that post. Shortly after leaving 
the prisoner to his reflections, I was handed a note which 
he had passed through a window to a passing soldier. The 
missive, the original of which lies before me as I write, 
reads as follows: 

"If Lieutenant McElrath will have the kindness to loan 
me a book or two I shall be sincerely obliged. 
Respectfully, etc., 

"EDWARD Z. C. JUDSON. 

Recognizing the name at once I knew my prisoner to be 
the redoubtable "Ned Buntline." The great sensational nov- 
elist was reluctantly contributing his share toward a minor 
chapter of the history of the war in the same hurried and 
peremptory manner in which doubtless the heroes of his own 
lurid fiction were unexpectedly caused to encounter the 
shocks of adverse fate. I sent the messenger back with an 
armful of literature and arranged matters so that a frr-li 
supply could be provided at the captive's will. 

On General Brown's arrival at Fort Hamilton iri"lhe 
evening I learned that Mr. or rather Sergeant Judson 
had been placed in durance at the special request of 1m n 
He had come North from "the field" on furlough, and had 
not only overstayed his allotted time a circumstance which 
of itself might not have provoked connubial dissension but 
he had become irritable in his days of inactivity, being em- 
phatically one of that restless class who "prey upon high ad- 
venture, nor can tire of aught but rest." His spouse, ac- 
cordingly thought the easiest way to restore peace in the 
family would be to pack its head off to the regiment. That, 
however, was not a thing that could be at once accomplished, 
as his command was somewhere in the distant South, and it 
was necessary to wait until the quartermaster's department 
should despatch a vessel in that direction. In all likelihood 



-79- 

the mere overstaying of his furlough would not under the 
circumstances of the period have subjected him to General 
Brown's special displeasure. New York at that time was 
crowded with volunteer soldiers stiiving to return to their 
commands from furlough or sick leave, and in addition to 
extensive barracks erected for their accommodation in the 
Battery, and the City Hall Park, large numbers were con- 
stantly encamped on the Fort Hamilton reservation. The 
tide was incessantly ebbing and flowing. Detachments were 
shipped Southward several times a week, but their disap- 
pearance was unnoticed, their places being instantly filled 
by new arrivals from the interior. But General Brown, albeit 
he was famous in the army as a rigid martinet which in 
truth means simply an officer who respects his calling suffi- 
ciently to do his duty conscientiously was in addition a 
humane man, with profound and delicate respect for the fair 
sex. And this woman's complaint of ill-treatment excited 
his ire against the luckless chevroned scribe, and impelled 
him to order the latter to be locked up as I have said, in a 
brick archway in the bowels of Fort Hamilton's granite walls. 
H-'-i captivity, however, was not particularly galling. On 
the following day Mrs. Judson presented herself at the fort 
and was at once allowed to visit her husband. She brought 
him a supply of stationery, and he at once betook himself to 
novel writing. Each forenoon she made her appearance at 
the post, and it was rumored in the garrison that in the 
few days that his confinement lasted he had written three 
blood-curdling novels, which his wife found a market for in 
the city. I regret that in the pressure of more important 
business I had not sufficient curiosity at the time to ascer- 
tain their titles. 

A few days after Judson's incarceration Gen. Brown sent 
me another prisoner, with similar injunctions as to his safe- 
keeping. This captive was a young man dressed in the fa- 
tigue uniform of a commissioned officer, and presenting on 



8o 

his countenance and in his general appearance, evidence of 
recent over-indulgence in drink. He was a German, with a 
very imperfect knowledge of the English language. My in- 
structions with regard to him were very plain, and I clapped 
him into the same apartment with Judson and left him to 
cool off, without at the time inquiring his name or the cause 
of the singularly disgraceful manner in which he had been 
projected upon my notice. 

When I reported the new arrival to General Brown on 
his return at the point that evening I found the latter hiphly 
incensed over the circumstances which had led to his arrest. 
It appeared that the German, after loading himself with 
beer in some East Side saloon, had become engaged in a 
dispute with the people of the establishment which resulted 
in a lively fight. The military man succeeded in worsting 
his opponents and in clearing the apartment of both visitors 
and attendants. Then hastily closing the front door, he 
armed himself with the piece of scantling with which it was 
barred at night when shut to exclude the outside world, and 
stood ready to repel an assault. This was not long delayed. 
Planted by the door the hero of the evening made such a 
vigorous defense with his formidable weapon that the assail- 
ing party were twice repelled with considerable effusion of 
blood and some severe bruises. Then, taking advantage of 
their discomfiture, he made a sudden sortie, brandishing his 
club, and before the astonished host divined his purpose, he 
rushed past them and was quickly out of sight. As he was 
hastening in the direction of Broadway he met a party be- 
longing to Gen. Brown's Veteran Reserves patrolling the 
streets in search of wandering and dilatory soldiers. Slack- 
ing his pace, he ordered the detachment to halt, and the ser- 
geant in command, impressed by his authoritative manner 
and his uniform, reiterated the order. Hastily informing the 
sergeant that a party of volunteers had been maltreated in a 
beer saloon in the vicinity, the stranger took command of 



the detachment himself and marched them to the place f 
his recent conflict. The door was found open and the room 
was filled with people drinking beer and discussing vocifer- 
ously the apparition before which they had given way a few 
moments previously. Wheeling his column into line, the 
self-appointed commander gave the order to charge. 

An indescribable tumult ensued. The affrighted occupants 
of the saloon, seeing their redoubtable adversary approaching 
with reinforcements, had no time to rally for resistance, but 
fled incontinently, making their exits promiscuously through 
the rear windows of the hall and scaling the fences of the 
back yard with eager haste. Finding himself again the mas- 
ter of the situation, the stranger discreetly marched his 
command from the scene of the double victory, and when 
he had gone a few blocks from the place he relinquished the 
command again to the sergeant and disappeared in the dark- 
ness. The idea gradually penetrated the mind of the ser- 
geant that he had been imposed upon. Accordingly the next 
morning on General Brown's arrival at the New York 
office the disgusted non-commissioned officer reported the oc- 
currence, and mighty was the General's wrath at hearing 
the rueful story. The appearance of an intoxicated officer 
was not a phenomenal thing in those days, but that anyone 
should have the audacity to take possession of his pet patrol 
and use it for the subjugation of a lager beer saloon was an 
indignity not to be ignored. Detectives were employed to 
ferret out the mysterious brawler, and on the following day 
they arrested him in his room in the St. Nicholas hotel and 
carried him triumphantly to the general. The latter wasted 
no words over him but sent him at once under guard to 
Fort Hamilton, as I have related. On the following morning 
he was brought before the general at headquarters immedi- 
ately after guard mounting, when he declared himself to be- 
long to the staff of General Doster, then provost marshal 
of the District of Columbia, recreating himself in New York 



82 

on a brief leave of absence. He was remanded to his case- 
mate and a communication was despatched to General Dos- 
ter inquiring as to the truth of the story. 

The two worthies bore their confinement with praise- 
worthy good nature. Their meals were furnished them from 
the bachelor officers' mess, which at that time was conducted 
in handsome style under the stewardship of one of the Flou- 
quets of the famous Plattsburg family of caterers, who had 
been enticed from the shores of Lake Champlain for that 
special purpose, and both were permitted to receive visitors 
during the day time. Finally a steamer was despatched to 
some Southern port from which Judson could receive trans- 
portation to his regiment, and I never saw him again. Rum- 
ors, however, reached us of his having distinguished himself 
by gallant conduct shortly after his liberation. A Federal 
command somewhere in the interior stood in need of sup- 
plies, but the master of the vessel transporting them was re- 
luctant to run the gauntlet of rebel troops occupying the 
banks of the river, by which alone the command could be 
reached. Pilots were not obtainable, as the shores were 
known to teem with confederate sharpshooters. In the 
emergency Judson stepped nobly to the front and volun- 
teered to pilot the steamer. Bullets rattled along unceas- 
ingly against the iron clad pilot house which he occupied 
during the trip up the river, but happily none of them were 
billeted for Judson, who stood calm and unflinching at the 
wheel until he had conveyed his charge to his destination. 
For this gallant act, the story ran, he was publicly thanked 
in general orders besides receiving more substantial reward 
in the shape of promotion. 

Meanwhile my German captive remained in durance vile, 
nearly a fortnight elapsing before the receipt of General 
Doster's response to General Brown's letter. The answer 
fully corroborated the prisoner's statements in regard to him- 
self. He proved to be a subaltern officer of the Prussian 



-8 3 - 

cavalry, a baron by title, and the son of one of the most 
prominent officials of the Prussian government. He had re- 
ceived leave of absence to enable him to visit the United 
States and attach himself to our service in order to gain a 
practical familiarity with grand tactics, and the New York 
episode which I have related was possibly a private rehearsal 
of some tactical principle he had picked up during a resi- 
dence of several months in the national capital. Of course, 
he was immediately restored to liberty, with a spicy repri- 
mand from General Brown, who had him kept under sur- 
veillance until he had departed in the cars for Philadelphia. 
Some months afterward I encountered him at the St. Nicho- 
las hotel, in New York, and found him a very sociable com- 
panion. I understood that he returned to his own country 
early in 1864. I have thought it best not to reveal his 
identity, foreign though he was, inasmuch as an official rep- 
resenting his government and bearing his name and title, has 
figured somewhat largely and creditably in the higher dip- 
lomatic circles in Washington during the past few years 
and I have a serious suspicion that he is the same person 
who as an unknown lieutenant nearly twenty-four years 
ago was the reluctant recipient of the enforced hospitalities 
of Fort Hamilton and the fellow prisoner of Ned Buntline. 



CHAPTER^ SEVEN 

WITH "SCOUTS OF THE PLAINS" 
AND AT HOME 

THE HILLS OF DELAWARE 

Once more, dear hills of Delaware, 

I look upon your leafy pines 
Once more upon your mossy slopes 

My wearied form at ease reclines, 
And up into the pictured clouds 

I gaze with glad contented ryes, 
And feel myself in bliss at home, 

Beneath my boyhood's native skies. 

I've stood on fair Nevada's peaks, 

And thought the picture grand and fair 
I've sighed in bright Yosemite, 

And thought 'twas almost Heaven there; 
I've wandered far in every clime, 

And met with beauties strange and rare, 
But ever still my heart looked back 

To thesethe hills of Delaware! 

No matter where my footsteps tread 

By fortune's wayward changes led 
No matter how those fortunes shine, 

Or where I rest my weary head 
In dreams by night, in thoughts by day, 

Before me pictured everywhere, 
I see my home, and those I love, 

Upon the hills of Delaware. 

Ned Euntline. 




-8 S - 

T the close of the late Civil War, Colonel 
Judson retired from military service, cov- 
ered with wounds and broken in health, but 
retaining his indomitable will and courage 
the resistless force that had carried him 
through perils and adventures bordering upon the 
marvellous. That he survived the numerous wounds 
from bullet and shell and sabre, inflicted during his 
military career and desperate encounters with In- 
dians, outlaws, etc., is evidence of a wonderful vi- 
tality. 

With a few congenial spirits notably "Buffalo 
Bill" (William F. Cody), "Wild Bill" (James B. 
Hickox), "Texas Jack" (J. B. Omohundro) and 
Captain Jack Crawford all well-known scouts and 
frontiersmen, Ned Buntline rambled over the West- 
ern plains, where he reveled in hunting and Indian 
fighting, while gathering abundant material for the 
thrilling romances of the border with which his 
name and fame have been since so closely identified. 
His coolness and courage, no less than his remark- 
able skill as a crack shot with the rifle and pistol, 
made him an acknowledged leader among the wild 
bordermen of the West, and if the record of his life 
on the plains could be carefully gathered, it would 
form a bright chapter in his life history. Without 
seeking for fame in this direction, he was ever one 
of the boldest defenders of the defenseless, and 
often an avenger of the cruel wrongs perpetrated by 
the lawless Indian tribes. 



86 

i In public or private life Ned Runtime was not 
the wild man of the woods he was often supposed 
to be. He was a man of culture and dignity, an 
eloquent orator and clever conversationalist "the 
center of magnetic attraction'* in an assemblage, and 
few would surmise from his appearance that he was 
the hero of a hundred battles. In 1867 and 1868 
he made a regular tour in California and along the 
Pacific coast, in the temperance work, and gained 
the reputation of a vigorous and effective advocate. 
He also appeared frequently as a lecturer, in inci- 
dents and scenes of the war, but his great theme, a& 
a friend once remarked, was radical Americanism, 
and from first to last he believed and practiced in 
the principle that Americans should rule America. 

An amusing episode occurred in connection with 
his brief yet sensational career as playwright and 
actor. He had prepared a Western drama, entitled, 
"The Scouts of the Plains," adapted to the histrionic 
abilities of the bold scouts Buffalo Bill and Texas 
Jack, who agreed to meet him in Chicago, where 
they were to make their first appearance on any 
stage aside from the stage-coach of the far West. 
Ned Buntline thus relates his experience in introduc- 
ing Buffalo Bill to the public as one of the hunters 
of the wild west: 

"I shall never forget the time I had putting him 
on his feet as a showman twelve or fourteen years 
ago. We had corresponded and I had agreed to 
run the show. We were to meet in Chicago. I got 



-8 7 - 

there Thursday morning, and Buffalo Bill and Texas 
Jack arrived in the evening. They were to bring 
twenty Indian bucks for the show. Judge of my 
consternation when they came without an Indian. 
What were we to do? The biggest theater in Chi- 
cago was hired for the next Monday night at a 
heavy cost. We had no Indians, and it was to be 
an Indian show. 'We must now have a play/ I 
said. I went out and hired ten actors who were 
waiting around for something to do, and set Bill 
and Jack to making Indians of them. Then I went 
to writing a play. It was a blood-curdling and gory 
tragedy of the plains. Buffalo Bill was made the 
hero, but I was cast in a part where there was more 
talking to do, lest he might not be up to it. I wrote 
the play as rapidly as possible, handing the sheets to 
copyers as fast as finished, so that all could have 
their parts. We had three rehearsals one on Fri- 
day and two on Saturday. My own part was not 
written at all; I merely had a cue at the end, and 
led up to it with any sort of talk I pleased. The 
eventful evening came. The curtain rose on an audi- 
ence of perhaps three thousand. I had a rambling 
soliloquy about frontier life and my old pards Buf- 
falo Bill and Texas Jack, when, at the cue, in they 
stalked. The audience rose and howled a welcome 
to them. The cheer was prolonged and embarrass- 
ing. At last it subsided and the time came for Buf- 
falo Bill to speak. He had forgotten his part and 
stood like a statue. The prompter gave him the 



88 

words. I told him to say something anything. 
He was speechless! I said: 'Why, you've been off 
buffalo-hunting with Milligan, haven't you?' That 
woke up him. He looked at Milligan and his 
friends in a box, and told in plain language the story 
of his last buffalo hunt. Then we all got warmed 
up, and the 'Scouts of the Plains' went off in a lively 
manner. It was a highly successful show, financially, 
and has introduced many other similar wild west 
combinations, which the public seem to appreciate 
judging from the vast assemblages drawn together 
to see the same. 

Later another western scout, James B. Hickox 
( u Wild Bill") was added to Ned Buntline's unique 
company, and this dauntless man the bravest of the 
brave, as proven in many deadly fights to maintain 
law and order was a bright star in the little galaxy. 
While holding the position of sheriff or marshal at 
Hays City, and afterward at Abilene, Kansas, "Wild 
Bill" maintained the reputation for cool courage 
which he had shown in earlier years, through meet- 
ing, single-handed, and killing or desperately wound- 
ing all the members of the notorious McCandless 
gang of desperadoes. Wild Bill, however, was 
never given to seeking notoriety, and it was with 
difficulty that he had been induced to remain for 
even a short time with the traveling company. He 
had always been a real actor in life's wild drama, 
and the presentation of this on the stage did not ap- 
peal to him, therefore it is not surprising that the 



-89- 

call of the wild had been an irresistible one to him. 
Of all the American frontiersmen not even except- 
ing Kit Carson it is believed that Wild Bill met 
with a greater number of deadly encounters against 
apparently hopeless odds than any other in history. 
His murder was a most cowardly act, and thousands 
of friends and admirers of the brave scout mourned 
the loss of a man who had often been tried and never 
found wanting; a man sometimes misjudged, but one 
whose kindness of heart was known to those most 
intimately acquainted with him. No other westerner 
of recent years can be named to bear comparison as 
a daring frontier sheriff, a perfect marksman and 
ever reliable maintainer of law against all odds, with 
the possible exception of the late Seth Bullock, 
friend and companion of Theodore Roosevelt. 

The following tribute to Wild Bill appeared not 
long after his death, in the New York Clipper: 

UNDER THE SOD 

BURIAL OF WILD BILL 

WRITTEN FOR THE NEW YORK CLIPPER (jAN. 13, 1877) 

AND DEDICATED TO CHARLEY UTTER (COLORADO 

CHARLEY), BY CAPT. JACK 

[Capt. J. W. Crawford, otherwise "Capt. Jack," is also 
known west of the Missouri as the Poet-scout of the Black 
Hills, and last winter his extempore songs and poetic de- 
clamations were the life of the mining-camps in that sec- 
tion. As guide to an expedition in search of gold, he was 
one of the first to explore the Black Hills country, and 
credited to him are some of the quickest and most daring 



rides on record. Last August, in response to a telegram 
from Buffalo Bill (W. F. Cody), he started on horseback, 
and alone, to join General Crook, whose command he found 
in five days, after a ride of five hundred miles through the 
Big Horn country. On another occasion he carried dis- 
patches for a leading New York newspaper from Owl Creek 
to Fort Laramie, a distance of over four hundred miles, in- 
side of four days, beating five fresh couriers and getting in 
five hours ahead of all others. The dispatch cost $250, and 
a supplementary dispatch descriptive of Capt. Jack's remark- 
able ride cost $150 more, which, with $500 paid Capt. Jack 
for his services as courier, made The Herald's outlay $900. 
These costly dispatches appeared in that paper on Sept. 17, 
1876, the day on which Capt. Jack wrote the poem given 
below, which now appears in print for the first time. After 
Buffalo Bill left General Merritt's cavalry on the Yellow- 
stone River, Capt. Jack was appointed chief of scouts with 
that command. At present he is a character-actor with Buf- 
falo Bill's traveling company. Verses from his pen have 
from time to time appeared in these columns; and accom- 
panying his present contribution is a personal narration that 
could not possibly be couched in more expressive language 
than the simple words he himself has chosen: "A word or 
two of my former history. I am twenty-eight years of age, 
stand five feet eleven inches high, and weigh 178 pounds. I 
entered the army in 1863, and at that time could not write 
my own name. 1 scouted for General Hartranft, and was 
wounded at Spottsylvania, Va., May 12, 1864. While in 
the Saterlee Hospital, Philadelphia, one of the Sisters of 
Charity taught me to read and to write (and may she be an 
angel for it!). After five months spent in the hospital, I 
returned to the field and was again wounded, this time at 
Petersburg, Va., April 2, 1865, after which I was discharged. 
Since then I Have led a wandering life, mostly on the plains. 
I have written many poems after the style of Bret Harte. 



Gen. Ouster's death was first put into rhyme by me." James 
B. Hickox ("Wild Bill"), who was killed at Deadwood, 
Wy. Ten, on Aug. 2 last, was, we believe, the husband of 
Mrs. Agnes Lake, widow of the widely-known circus man- 
ager William Lake, who was murdered at Granby, Mo., 
Aug. 21, 1869, by a man whom he had ejected from his show 
for attempting to see it without paying. The murderer of 
"Wild Bill" was last week sentenced to be hanged next 
March. Ed. Clipper.] 

Under the sod in the prairie-land 

We have laid him down to rest, 
With many a tear from the sad, rough throng 

And the friends he loved the best; 
And many a heartfelt sigh was heard 

As over the sward we trod, 
And many an eye was filled with tears 

As we covered him with the sod. 

Under the sod in the prairie-land 

We have laid the good and true 
An honest heart and a noble scout 

Has bade us a last adieu. 
No more his silvery voice will ring. 

His spirit has gone to God; 
Around his faults let Charity cling, 

While we cover him with the sod. 

Under the sod in the land of gold 

We have laid the fearless Bill; 
We called him Wild, yet a little child 

Could bend his iron will. 
With generous heart he freely gave 

To the poorly clad, unshod 
Think of it, pards of his noble traits 

While you cover him with the sod. 



92 



Under the sod in Deadwood Gulch 

You have laid his last remains; 
No more his manly form will hail 

The red-man on the plains. 
And Charley, may Heaven bless you! 

You gave him a "bully good send ;" 
Bill was a friend to you, pard, 

And you were his last, best friend. 

You buried him 'neath the old pine-tree, 

In that little world of ours, 
His trusty rifle by his side 

His grave all strewn with flowers; 
His manly form in sweet repose, 

That lovely silken hair 
I tell you, pard, it was a sight 

That face so white and fair! 

And while he sleeps beneath the sod 

His murderer goes free, 
Released by a perjured, gaming set 

Who'd murder you and me 
Whose coward hearts dare never meet 

A brave man on the square. 
Well, pard, they'll find a warmer clime 

Than they ever found out there. 

Hell is full of just such men ; 

And if Bill is above to-day 
The Almighty will have enough to do 

To keep him from going away 
That is, from making a little scout 

To the murderer's home below ; 
And if old Peter will let him out, 

He can clean out the ranch, I know. 



About 1870 Ned Buntline returned to Delaware 
county, New York, and erected near Stamford, the 
place of his birth, a handsome residence which he 
christened the "Eagle's Nest," in remembrance of 
his hermitage of the same name in the Adirondack 
wilderness. His home in the highlands of the Hud- 
son was erected upon a picturesque hill-side, over- 
looking many miles of the lovely Delaware valley, 
and successive ridges of the Catskill range. The 
residence was built and furnished at an expense of 
nearly $25,000, and all the surroundings indicated 
the culture and sporting proclivities of the owner. 
A tract of twenty acres close at hand was kept as a 
game preserve, and his favorite room, the armory or 
curiosity shop, as he was wont to call it, contained a 
rare collection of guns, pistols, sabres and other im- 
plements of warfare and the chase. His library 
sanctum, as he remarked, were one, and in this cosy 
retreat his prolific pen produced the numerous thrill- 
ing tales which brought him wider fame and fortune. 
He was at this period under contract to contribute 
exclusively to the columns of the New York Weekly, 
and it has been stated that he received from the pro- 
prietors, Messrs. Street & Smith, the handsome sum 
of $20,000 per year for his productions. Through 
his thrilling and sensational tales many of them 
possessing the merit almost of historical novels of 
the frontier "Buffalo Bill" first attained public 
fame, and his success in later years may be in a great 
measure traced to this origin, as he was thereby 



94 

made the ideal representation of a border scout in 
the opinion of Young America, and he possessed, 
fotunately, the sterling qualities that confirmed this 
impression in his public career a genuine triumphal 
tour at home and abroad. 

Under Ned Buntline's supervision the mountain 
streams of Delaware county were liberally stocked 
with brook trout, and he enjoyed the fishing each 
season, with a few intimate friends who were ardent 
lovers of the Waltonian art. In a letter to the 
writer of this, several years ago, the keen old sports- 
man gave the following graphic description of the 
last day's sport of the season: 

It has been my habit for years, when no serious hindrance 
intervened, to spend the last day of the trout season over 
on the crystal Beaverkill, and the last day of August found 
me at the famous Tripp cottage, with my cherished Orvis 
rod, a book of Orvis flies and a big box of genuine grass- 
hoppers, ready to see the season out. 

The stream was very low, consequently rather warm and 
the fishing poor except where cold springs entered the main 
stream. There it was superb, and knowing the stream as 
I do from ten years of experience I skipped all places but 
these very spring-holes, and the consequence was that I came 
in with a twenty-pound basket full of speckled beauties, 
mostly of fine size. 

Approaching the stream cautiously on the Charley Water's 
clearing, sheltered from view by a clump of willows, I looked 
over to the mouth of a cold spring brook running from Rob- 
ert Seal's farm. In a shallow pool where the ice-cold water 
from the spring ran in I counted ten trout that would aver- 
age from ten to twelve inches long and in weight strike a 
half pound apiece. There they lay, their dorsal fins quiv- 



95 

ering with pleasure, in the cool shade, unconscious of dan- 
ger. I changed a much worn leader for a fresh one, took a 
single black gnat from my book, shortened my line for a 
clean lift out, and then, all unseen through the leafy screen, 
lightly dropped an invitation to the lowest trout in the pool. 
The fly hardly touched water ere it was sprung for, taken, 
and Mr. Salmo Fontinalis literally lifted out by the tough 
bamboo, without noise or trouble enough to startle the rest 
of the little "school." Number one deftly secured and bas- 
keted, I tried the same game with numbers two, three and 
four successfully. But the fifth was a little more gamey, or 
else success had made me careless; and, only half-hooked, he 
tore away and made the water fly with his wild antics, start- 
ling his brethren into other waters and shutting off my rash 
intention of "cleaning out" the pool. 

You cannot, with every six-ounce bamboo rod, lift out 
a half pound trout ; in fact, I never had one before that was 
pliant enough for a seventy-foot cast, that would bear such a 
strain ; but I believe I have as good a rod as ever fell to an 
angler's lot. With the tip touching the reel plate, I have 
proved it, holding a three-pounder in a swift current, away 
from roots and snags, till I tired and drowned him out. 

To me there are two glorious times in the trout season. 
The first is in the early Spring, when the streams are full 
and rapid, when the trout seem wild and fresh from a long 
Winter's rest, and like nature herself, full of beauty, 
strength and vim! 

The second is the last of the season, when the largest 
trout emerge from their hiding places under dark ledges, 
mossy banks and deep, well sheltered pools, to seek the sandy 
spawning beds far up the stream, where they can carry out 
the procreative laws which prevent our brooks, lakes and 
rivers from utter depletion, fished as they are, literally "to 
death." But friend Wildwood, I fear I am spinning too 
long a yarn for the limited space accorded in your journal to 
piscatorial lore. 



-96- 

Ere I close let me join the general "boom" in congratula- 
tions that you have come Eastward for light, found it, and 
are content to give your facile pen play in a field which I 
trust will add both to your fame and fortune. 

In another communication, at a later date, Ned 
Buntline alluded to the wild sports of the wilderness 
in northern New York, and closed with a humorous 
description of the last bear of the Western Catskill 
range, thus: 

LAST BEAR IN THE CATSKILL MOUNTAINS 

Until within a very few years, bears have been often seen 
in the Catskill Mountains near the two heads of the Dela- 
ware River, every Fall, when berries were ripe, and corn in 
the milk. And occasionally they lost their pelts, for we 
have some hunters of the old stock left. 

But they are rare visitors now. About Thanksgiving we 
had a light fall of snow, barely enough to make an excuse to 
start sleighs to running. 

One crisp morning about that time, young Will Papino, 
living two miles east of Stamford, and directly under the 
steepest part of Old Bear Mountain, now misnamed Utsay- 
anto, came tearing into town to tell the sportsmen that a 
huge black bear was playing and tumbling about in the snow 
near the foot of the mountain, just above his father's house. 

Jerusalem! Such a hurry and a scurry you never saw 
among the shooters of the town. I had the sciatica and 
could not go, so Dell Warner, one of our best shots, got my 
45-calibre Sharps rifle and jumped into his cutter with Billy 
Ives for driver. Billy carried a tremendous old Queen Anne, 
with 24 No. 1 buckshot to the load. 

Erskine Seeley, a keen sportsman and the owner of the 
best dog in the county, doubled in with Aruna Maynard, 



97 

and a Mr. Green mated with Harvey Wood, another of our 
noted shots, and away they started after Bruin. 

There was not much time lost getting there, and sure 
enough when the party got to Papino's up the hill nearly 
half a mile, near an old hay barn, the monster was seen. 

The shotgun men were not quite so anxious to close 
up when they saw the huge black beast slowly walking about 
near the edge of the woods; it was debated whether shot- 
guns were just the thing for bear hunting. This gave Dell 
Warner the start. He shouldered the Sharp, and, backed 
by the valiant Ives, started up the hill. 

He got within about four hundred yards, set his sight 
for the distance, and as the bear had stopped playing and 
seemed to watch the party, knelt down, took deliberate aim, 
and, to use his own classic language, "let sliver!" 

The bullet struck the snow just under Bruin's nose, and 
must have knocked his eyes full, for he wheeled around and 
around as if pretty mad. 

Without rising, Warner coolly put in another .45-100 
cartridge, and allowing for windage, let drive again. This 
time Bruin got it hot, and as all the sportsmen were on the 
run up the hill to join Warner, yelling at every jump, the 
bear limped off toward the woods, turning once in a while as 
if it thought of fighting it out instead of retreating. 

"Don't let him get away, Dell!" shouted Seeley. 

"No, for goodness' sake, no!" cried Maynard. 

"Not if Ned's rifle is worth a snap!" said Dell, and he got 
a rest over the shoulder of Billy Ives, and as the bear 
mounted a shelving rock he fired his last and fatal shot. 

The bear rolled over and over down the rock, and when 
it reached the bottom it was still. 

Just then an old settler, Carlos Van Housen, who was 
wood chopping on the mountain, came tearing down through 
the woods with his ax on his shoulder and fire in his eye. 



98 

He got to the bear just as Warner and the rest came up, and 
his voice could have been heard a mile when he yelled : 

"What in shoel have you been shooting my Newfound- 
land dog for?" 

Dell stood like one suddenly struck with lightning. He 
looked sadly down at his prize and asked the old settler if its 
life was insured if it was not, he would pay for it. 

And that is the last bear seen in our range. 




CHAPTER^ EIGHT 




LATER YEARS - 
PERSONAL REMINISCENCES 

N 1871 Colonel Judson married an attrac- 
tive and amiable young lady, Miss Anna 
Fuller, of Stamford, and the picturesque 
mountain eyrie, the Eagle's Nest, was trans- 
formed from a hermitage to a happy home. 



The novelist was, if possible, more active than ever 
before in his literary labors, and under various sig- 
natures supplied a vast amount of highly sensational 
fiction to the publications of Messrs. Street & Smith. 
His stirring tales of frontier life and adventure at 
sea proved to be not only a mine of wealth for him- 
self, but one of the greatest attractions of the New 
York Weekly as well, and the enterprising publish- 
ers, as before mentioned, gave him a most munificent 
salary to contribute exclusively to their periodicals. 
His love of out-door sports did not diminish with 
the burden of years, and infirmities wrought by shot 
and shell. Referring to his home and surroundings 
many years ago in a letter to the writer of these 



100 

fragmentary memoirs, Ned Buntline remarked: 
"This is not much of a game region. We have a 
few woodcock, plenty of ruffed grouse, squirrels and 
pigeons, and brook trout. I usually go forty to one 
hundred and fifty miles for my trout and venison in 
season. It is a high, cold region here settled long 
ago. My ancestors came here immediately after 
the Revolution of 1776. I think I sent you a pic- 
ture of Eagle's Nest. It is beautifully located, and 
was designed by myself; a conservatory in one wing 
and a library of the same size forms the other wing. 
My library contains my books as well as all my 
hunting and fishing gear, with portraits of friends, 
etc., etc. I have a good library and take my winter's 
comfort there. In summer the woods and streams 
are my haunts almost constantly. Should you come 
East don't fail to visit me, and I will take you where 
trout congregate and red deer roam free." 

In a subsequent letter he writes: "Long con- 
tinued sickness, killing all love for the pen, must be 
my only excuse for not answering you before. A 
wound received in June, '63, the bullet still remain- 
ing under the spinal column in a place almost or 
quite impossible to extract, causes me fearful suf- 
fering from sciatica. . . . The winter here has 
been simply terrible, the thermometer below /cm 
all the time, snow on the level three feet, and in 
drifts twenty feet deep often. How do you like the 
picture? God helping me, 'tis my last winter in 
the North." 



101 



The following autumn Ned Buntline put into ef- 
fect his proposed plan to go South for the winter, 
and with characteristic love of out-door life, made 
the trip in his easy carriage, accompanied by his 
wife. While en route he was compelled to stop sev- 
eral days at Gettysburg, Pa., and wrote as follows 
from the historic old battle ground: "We are de- 
tained here by a continuous rain storm of five days, 
and I have been able to send for and get the Turf, 
Field and Farm with your kind biographical sketch. 
I find it in the main correct, only too flattering when 
speaking of my talents. ... In consequence of 
severe suffering from old wounds, especially in cold 
weather, I shall spend the fall and winter in a South- 
ern hunting trip, driving my own team, and follow- 
ing along the base of the Alleghenies and Blue 
Ridge through Southern Pennsylvania, Maryland, 
Virginia and North Carolina into Georgia. I pro- 
pose to hunt going and fish the trout streams as I 
return toward Eagle's Nest in the spring. I wish 
you were along. I expect a grand old time among 
the deer, bear and turkeys." 

It may be interesting to know that Mrs. Judson, 
a keen devotee of angling and out-door recreation, 
enjoyed the novelty and healthful character of the 
trip quite as fully as her husband, and in favorable 
weather could vie with him in fishing for trout and 
bass. Upon arriving in the Old Dominion, about 
the holiday season, Colonel Judson wrote as fol- 
lows from Warrenton, Va., under date of December 



102 



27: "Delightful society, fair hunting for quail and 
turkey, with fine weather, has kept me here yet. 
Next week I shall prospect the Blue Ridge and 
Upper Rappahannock. I have not met any of the 
old-time sportsmen yet, but may before I get 
through my trip. I got a twenty-pound wild turkey 
this morning. Wish you had him for dinner. No 
news down this way, only a Virginia Christmas is 
the liveliest fun you ever saw." 

On a subsequent trip to the Sunny South the gal- 
lant old sportsman prepared a series of brief let' 
for publication in one of the leading sporting jour- 
nals, to which he contributed frequently as a labor 
of love. The following extracts are given to illus- 
trate his keen delight in the sports of the field. The 
letters were written from Warrenton, Virginia: 
On the 15th of October our season opens on grouse, 
and wild turkey. They are unusually plenty the game 
laws and those of trespass being very closely observed. Fine 
sport will be had in the fields I am confident, and I will 
keep you posted thereon. 

Fox hunting, with a noble pack of hound N is indulged in 
three times a week by a gallant coterie of brave caval: 
and many fair ladies join in the dashing sport. 

Major Holman, on his famous leaper Talisman, gen- 
erally leads the way, while Charles Payne, the banker 
nephew of our genial friend, "Nicholas Spicer," is never far 
behind ; that is, unless he is delayed to let down a fencr 
some obese party who is unused to taking five bars on the 
fly, as he often does. 

Young James Maddux has a good hunter under him, and 
only gives in to the gallant major in keeping up to the 
hounds. 



103 

As soon as I get fairly settled to my work I hope to give 
you a detailed account of some of the "meets" in this vi- 
cinity 

I made a big drive from Eagle's Nest to this place with 
my Hambletonia team not Amazonian horses, as the Wash- 
ington Post called them. 

I drove 710 miles in nine days and a half in a light buck- 
board hunting wagon, and brought my team in good con- 
dition to continue the journey had I so desired. 

I send you a record of opening day, Oct. 15, near this 
place. 

James K. Maddux, of the Warren Green Hotel, twenty 
quail and one rabbit; Major Holman and friend, nineteen 
birds the thirty-nine birds being all killed from one cover, 
within a short drive from the city. Mr. Jeffries, a rising 
young farmer of this place, killed five wild turkeys, and 
Dr. Lacey, of New York, got two more out of the same 
flock. 

As these gentlemen merely wished to initiate the open 
season they did not seek to make as large bags as they could 
have done. 

There were other sportsmen out, but they went beyond my 
immediate outlook, and I 'do not yet know the result of 
their shooting. 

Gave is very plentiful here, for it has been protected. 

Have just received a delightful letter from dear old "Nick 
Spicer" Alban S. Payne from his mountain home in the 
Blue Ridge, thirty miles away. He met with an accident 
some time since, which injured his true right hand so he 
could not write, but he tells me he will soon resume his 
"spicy" sketches. God grant him long life and a bright sun- 
set with his loved ones ever near to cheer the descent to the 
golden shore. 

Since my last note to you the fox hunting coterie have 
made four gallant runs, killing two gray foxes and a red 



104 

one and running a fourth to earth after a long and exciting 
chase. 

The hunters have been busy after birds and have met with 
fair success. "Alic," from Washington, paid us a visit, being 
a guest at the hospitable home of Charlie Ross. As quail, 
turkey and grouse abound on Rossmere, he lived gloriously, 
I am sure. 

Three Philadelphia gentlemen spent a week in the vi- 
cinity very pleasantly, making the Warren Green their head- 
quarters. Their hind-quarters, like Pope's, were in the 
saddle every day, as they rode out to seek fur and feather. 

The shooting will be far better if we can only get a frost 
or two to kill the weeds, which have grown rank and thick 
with so much rain. 

The fox hunters will enjoy the crisp air also and scent 
will lie all the better when the sun rises on frosted fields. 
C. E. F. Payne, the Master Huntsman, is receiving many 
letters from lovers of good hounds and those who enjoy the 
daring rides the hunters take. Though a very busy man in 
his bank, he rises before dawn and covers many a mile of 
copse and forest and field before the opening hour arrives. 

The letter from the noble Colonel of the "Old Guard," 
the veteran Skinner, roused a thousand pleasant recollec- 
tions in the mind of "yours truly." A week ago last Friday, 
the coolest day we have yet had in Virginia this year, I 
drove fifty miles to enjoy a visit with genial, true-hearted 
"Nick Spicer," Dr. Alban S. Payne. I found him at his de- 
lightful home near Markham, in the foot-hills of the Blue 
Ridge, surrounded by his good wife and well-loved and 
lovely daughters, enjoying the comforts of a generous home, 
but not in as robust health as when last we met. The acci- 
dent I alluded to in my last letter yet troubled him and makes 
writing painful and laborious. Yet he says he will soon re- 
sume his pen for the sake of us "old-time men" who love him 
so well. The warmth of my welcome at Crystal Water 



105 

Hall made me forget the chill air and the long rough ride, 
while in the presence of the man who struck Billy Patterson, 
listening to the music of his accomplished daughters, I felt 
it was a sin to think of growing old. 

To Colonel Skinner, of whom we talked so much that 
day, I would say: I will, if health and engagements permit, 
fulfill his advice in regard to the Daniel and Asshely hunts. 
The old Colonel has many very warm friends here who al- 
ways ask after him when we meet. Since frost came birds 
arc easier got at, therefore they appear more plenty. 

Mr. Charles Payne, the popular banker, still keeps up 
his pack of hounds, and hunts them boldly and frequently 
and with good success. Well mounted, a rather light weight, 
he generally leads the field. Young Mr. De Lancey, from 
New York, is never absent at the death; he is a very fine 
rider, and has a fast hunter and fine jumper. James K. 
Maddux rides with the boldest, and with the gun has no 
superior, in fact no equal in this section. 

With my gun, a Colt choke bore, 12 gauge, l l /2 pounds, 
he missed but one quail in twenty shots, in thick brush, 
which is far ahead of my best work with the same gun. 

I am invited to a deer and turkey hunt on the Lower 
Rappahannock next week, and as Major Dowerman and 
Mr. Yates are to be in the party, some game will have to 
suffer, "/or sure." 

With the exception of one cold snap last week, the 
weather has been delightful, real nice weather for an old 
man's enjoyment. 

Wild turkey, quail, pheasant and rabbit are found on 
the table of the Warren Green very frequently, and mine 
host Maddux welcomes his guests in true "Old Dominion" 
style. 



The sporting sketches from Ned Runtime's pen 
form an attractive feature of his literary work. Al- 



io6 

though written hastily and spontaneously, th*y are 
filled with the spirit of enthusiasm so characteristic 
of the author. Leon Mead, an timate friend of 
the novelist, says of his life work as represented in 
his voluminous writings: "Ned Buntline accom- 
plished more literary work than Walter Scott and 
Dickens put together. In book form his serial 
stories, which he has been almost incessantly penning 
for over fifty years, would amount perhaps to more 
than two hundred volumes. It is presumable that 
much which he wrote he did not very highly pr 
for intrinsic merit, just as Whittier, the poet, wishes 
that he had never published his first little volume of 
verses. But Buntline's tales stand by themselves as 
a distinct class of literature. They cannot be com- 
pared with the so-called refined novel, except per- 
haps upon points of style. It is certain that his 
methods of work were inspirational, else how couKl 
he have weavcd his thrilling plots as he wrote, with- 
out previous deliberation. What Goethe says about 
literary style is essentially true; 4 style is the man 
himself.' 

"His experience, both military and secular, doubt- 
less caused him to continue in the peculiar field of 
fiction which he originated and in which he was un- 
surpassed. Upon one occasion when the writer was 
paying him a visit at his clc^it home, which he 
called Eagle's Nest, in the oTtskills, he said: 'I 
might have paved for myself a far different career 
in letters, but my early lot was cast among rough 



men on the border; they became my comrades, and 
when I made my name as a teller of stories about 
Indians, pirates and scouts, it seemed too late to be- 
gin over again. And besides, I made more money 
than any Bohemian in New York or Boston. I did 
try writing temperance tracts once for a religious 
society, but they were altogether too frugal about 
the compensation, and so I turned over the job to a 
needy friend, and resumed the spinning of yarnsJ 

"This illustrates the fact the Buntline was not 
without business insight, and a literary man in these 
times cannot creep into a shell of ideality without 
coming, sooner or later, to want. 

"Colonel Judson was eccentric in his mode of life, 
and his career in itself was quite as romantic as any- 
thing he ever penned. His exploits on the plains 
developed in him a reckless daring and the posses- 
sion of this quality infused strength into the vivid- 
ness of his heroic characters as he described them. 
He seems never to have been afraid of man or 
beast, and the many places of imminent danger in 
which he frequently found himself afforded him 
chances to play the coward had be been one by na- 
ture." 



CHAPTER^ NINE 

NED BUNTLINE AS AN ANGLER AND 
ANGLING WRITER 




F all outdoor sports, Ned Buntline loved 
best the time honored art of angling, as in- 
dicated clearly in his writings. He was 
fond of the wilder sports of the wilderness 
and the plains, but there was a fascination 
in angling especially in trout fishing that ap- 
pealed to him more irresistibly than any other open 
air recreation. His entertaining contributions to the 
sportsmen's periodicals would fill a volume of ab- 
sorbing interest, and it is worthy of note that the 
greater portion of these sketches, written literally 
as a labor of love, are on the subject of fishing with 
rod and line, and the angling companions with whom 
he enjoyed the sport. A few of these pleasing tales 
of trouting and of his fishing associates are given 
to throw a side light on the man of dynamo energy 
and action, whose chosen pastime was the quiet, con- 
templative art made classic by good old Izaak Wal- 
ton: 



FEMALE AGLERS 

It must not be arrogated by man that he is sole lord of 
the Piscatorial Domain. I have a better-half who can handle 
her six-ounce fly-rod right skillfully; who has camped with 
me on the banks of more than one bright trout stream and 
gently, deftly drawn her share of the speckled beauties from 
their native element to the shore. 

I remember well, some ten years ago, a Mrs. Pollard, of 
Jersey City, who in a neat bathing suit took the lead over 
some of our best fly-fishermen wading in the Beaverkill, and 
who always took at least two to his one when her husband 
tried to beat her in the catch. She was graceful, skillful, 
and, unlike too many of the sterner sex, not a bit given to 
boasting. 

Female anglers are gaining ground every year, as any one 
who reads can see for himself. In the salmon waters of 
Canada, England's fairest Princess made a grand name this 
year for her skill and success. At this moment I hold a 
letter written to my wife by one of the fairest married belles 
of Washington, Mrs. Mattie W., telling of the joy she had 
experienced with her husband, father, and a select party of 
ladies and gentlemen from the Old Dominion, while on a 
fishing tour on the lovely Shenandoah. 

"I caught," said she, "and saved, after a tussel of an 
hour more or less a four-pound bass. Oh ! how he pulled 
worse than a mule speeding home at feeding time. But I 
held on even after he had run out all the line one hundred 
and fifty feet on my reel, and before I was quite tired out, 
I pulled him ashore, and sat right down on him, I was so 
afraid he'd take a fresh start and get away again." 

Just fancy that queenly form, which I have watched in 
many a glorious waltz, seated on a four-pound bass for a 
throne, while she shouted in glee: 

"Harry! Harry! run here run fast, for I've got the 



no 

King of the Waters in the tightest pen he ever knew! 
Come and help me save him." 

And well might our fair friend rejoice over such a cap- 
ture. A few months ago she and her happy mate made their 
bridal trip to the Eagle's Nest, and I am glad to know that 
to many other accomplishments she has added that of 
angling. Healthful, noble, and gentle, it will hurt no one 
to seek color, life and joy in the wilderness and by the 
side of bright waters. It is "big medicine," as an old 
Pawnee chief said to me, when I pulled a fifty pound cat- 
fish ashore for him near Grand Island once on a raw-silk 
fly-line, with a trout reel and ten ounce rod. I used a bit 
of sage hen for a bait that time. I thought it was "big 
medicine" myself when he shoved about half of it into an 
iron pot with some venison, bear fat and hardtack that he 
had got from the Post near by. But I was hungry and 
went into the mess cheerfully when it was brought into the 
tepee. 

But, Lord love me, how I have run on. What I want to 
see now in the American Angler, is some live, spirited, true 
sketches from some of our Female Anglers. There are 
plenty of them so come on, ladies, and blest be who first 
cries, "Hold, enough!" 'Twill ne'er be me bet your back 
hair on that. 

NED BUNTLINB. 
Eagle's Nest, Oct. 31, 1881. 

SETH GREEN ON THE STREAM 

In 1857, I was fishing on the lower rapids, between Lake 
Utawana and Marion River, which carries the overflow of 
the three Blue Mountain Lakes toward Raquette. It was 
early too early for the fly but I was there with a tin box 
full of white grubs, chopped out of rotten logs and thawed 
into life in the genial sun of a frosty May morning. I got 




SETH GREEN 
FAMOUS ANGLER AND FISH CULTURIST 



Ill 

a strike about once in two or three minutes on an average, 
and seldom less than a two-pounder took the Limerick. I 
had been in the ice-cold water an hour, had a fifteen pound 
basket full, and a string hanging to my belt with near as 
many more on it. I had, I thought, enough to go to my 
cabin on Eagle Lake with. 

Just then I heard a sharp "hallo," and looking over to- 
ward the "carry" I saw Bill Wood since killed in the war 
of 1861 carrying his boat over, followed by a thick-set man 
about my own size, but looking near a century older, with 
his bushy grey beard and hair, and I walked out to join 
them, for my own boat lay at the upper end of the carry. 

"Got any?" said the stranger curtly, before Bill had a 
chance to say who he was. 

"Some; more than I can eat for supper, I reckon," was 
my reply. 

"Yes; pretty fair for this time o' year," said the stranger, 
looking at the basket and string carelessly. 

I was nettled at "pretty fair" only, and yet I had near 
thirty pounds of trout, caught within less than an hour. 

"Pretty fair. Can you do better?" 

"Yes; Bill set down your boat. I'll show this youngster 
how to lure the big 'uns." 

That was all he said, and he took my rod, that I had not 
yet unjointed, put on a double leader of his own and a single 
hook at the end of it. I had been using two. Wading into 
the water just as he was, without rubbers, he cut the red 
belly fin from one of the best trout and put it on his hook. 
Casting over into the swiftest water of the rift he drew the 
line rapidly up stream and we could see the red fin leap 
every now and then clear of the white water. 

A second more and the largest trout I had ever seen in 
those waters struck and was fairly hooked. My rod, bought 
of Conroy as imported lancewood, bent nearly double, and 
then I saw the prettiest display of science I had then ever 



112 

seen. The trout, first up, then down stream, here, there, and 
everywhere, always on a strain, struggled nobly for life and 
freedom. But he had a master at the right end of the rod, 
and in about ten minutes a trout weighing, when we got 
home, five pounds lacking one ounce, was secured. 

"Shall I keep on, or will this do as a specimen?" asked 
the stranger. 

"This will do. I couldn't have saved him," I said. "And 
now, have the kindness to tell me who you are?" 

"Me? Oh, I'm only Seth Green." 

Only Seth Green! I had heard genial, gifted, skilful 
George Dawson, of the Albany Journal, talk of him. Gen- 
eral F. E. Spinner, then I think in Congress, told me of him 
said he was the best fly fisherman in America. I grasped 
his broad, honest hand, looked into his clear eye, and a love 
went out for him then, which in all the years since has never 
changed. 

Good old Seth Green! He has been old Seth for fifty 
years, yet he is younger, sturdier in frame and in heart than 
are two-thirds of the youngsters who talk fishing and ply 
the rod when they can do it easily in waters reached by rail 
and stocked for the benefit of lazy boys. 

God bless old Seth Green! He has done more for fish 
culture and fish information than all the rest of us scribblers 
on the theme in the country. Long may his hand be steady, 
his eye clear and his heart warm in the art he loves so well. 
His name is sacred to all who know him truly, and what he 
says about fish or fishing may be depended on faithfully. 

NED BUNTLINE. 
New York, Feb. 14th, 1882. 

WHERE TO FISH FOR TROUT 

Yearly, Uncle Sam receives much financial benefit in the 
postage line through letters directed to me, mainly by stran- 



gers, asking where I fish or where they can go to fish suc- 
cessfully, with the least trouble and at the least expense. 

Not to rob Uncle Samuel, but to obviate some of this 
trouble, I pen this article. 

To men ready to rough it and go out of the regular route 
of tourists men who can tramp through the woods and over 
the mountains, there are lakes and streams yet in the "North 
Woods" of Hamilton, Essex and St. Lawrence counties, New 
York, which are seldom fished at all, being hard to get at. 
The easily accessible lakes and streams are literally fished 
out. I can find as good fishing as they afford within forty 
miles of New York City, in little brooks never thought of 
by anglers; which run through farms into the Croton Lake, 
and elsewhere near at hand. 

To get at such streams as I first named write to Chauncey 
Hathorne or Charlie Bennett at Raquette Lake Hamilton 
county, or to Lon Wood, at the same place, and you will 
find guides who know just where to take you. I may strike 
those waters this spring if health and other things "jibe." 

My favorite stream for the past ten years has been the 
crystal Beaverkill, in Ulster county, New York. It is clean, 
contains trout only not a chub or eel in its upper waters; 
is full of falls, riffs, and deep eddies, and a man who knows 
how to fish and what to use at all proper seasons, can fill a 
twenty-pound basket any day, by working faithfully. He'll 
have to work, though, and the lighter his rod the less his 
arm will ache at night. I use an Orvis rig out and out 
the best I can find anywhere. My rod, a split bamboo, is 
seven ounces, my leaders invisible mist, and looped for the 
flies, making changes easy and I carry his patent folding-net 
to land large trout with. 

To reach the Beaverkill, from New York, take the Hud- 
son River road to Rhinebeck, cross there to Rondout, and 
go up the Delaware & Ulster to Margaretville, where Jerry 
Ackerly will receive you at the best hotel in Delaware 



county. Thence, Jack Scudder will speed you over the hills 
to the Beaverkill, where, at Tripps, Jones, Brothers, Leals 
or Weaver's, you will find as good accommodation as any 
true angler need desire, and fair sport. 

Whenever I am in, the starry flag of freedom flies from 
the staff at Tripp's. That has been my headquarters for 
years, but either of the other places named are good. Be- 
low, Mrs. Murdock keeps a splendid house, and there are 
many others whose names I forget, who will "take a stran- 
ger in" if they get a chance. 

Philadelphians will yet find trout and rattlesnakes up the 
Lycoming Valley especially about Trout Run, Red Run, 
and at Ralston. And on the Erie Railroad, at Narrows- 
burg, Sullivan county, New York, at the famous Murray 
hostelry, you will have fine trout and black bass fishing, 
pointed out close at hand. You will live well and do well. 
Ask Rockwell. If you wish to fish to music, where rattlers 
are almost as plenty as pretty girls, stop off at Mast Hope, 
just below, for a day or two. 

This is a brief mention of places with which I am fami- 
liar, that are easily reached. I will, in another number, 
point out some more, not so handy, but yet accessible and 
good when you get there. 

NED BUNTLINB. 

(NOTE. It should be borne in mind that the foregoing graphic 
lines were cast from "Ned Buntline's" prolific pen nearly thirty 
years ago, and other conditions prevail at the present time. The 
old-time guides have gone to their final rest, and the famous hos- 
telries of other days have, for the most part, given way to larger 
if not more congenial summer resort hotels. Palatial "camps" 
are now to be found in the once remote places of the Adirondack*, 
and angling de luxe is the order of the day with the millionaire 
fly-casters. F. E. P.) 

NOTES FROM THE NORTH WOODS 

Your old correspondent and good old-time angler, "A. 
N. C.," who fishes with an Orvis rod, as doth yours truly, 
carries me back to very happy memories in his "Then and 



Now." We have fished in the same waters and I know every 
guide and some rather slimpsy ones that were there from 
1856 to 1861, when I left the North Woods for harder 
game to deal with than wolves or panthers. 

Yes, I knew Dick Birch a better guide, hunter and fish- 
erman did not roam the woods or paddle lake and stream. I 
knew all the Bennett boys, the Woods' almost all were in 
my employment at one time or another. 

I was right about "Tallow Lake." I changed the name 
to Eagle Lake. I was the first settler in. there and ought to 
know. Ordway and Phelps had a small clearing, with a log 
hut and a log hay barn on it, that I bought. No one ever 
wintered there before me. 

As to Alvah Dunning God help the poor old fellow 
I would not hurt a grey hair on his head, if there are any 
hairs left. He used to annoy me, as he had annoyed others, 
and I quietly let him know that there was a law of self- 
defense, that ruled even in the wilderness. 

A. N. C. is probably aware that I named Eagle and Uta- 
wanna Lakes. Utawanna, in the Indian tongue, means "Sunny 
Water." 

I hope to go there this summer to see Chauncey Hathorn, 
Edward and Charlie Bennett, the Woods', good old Sabatis, 
and all the rest of the boys, and girls, too. And I'll fish for 
trout, and I'll get them in Minnie Pond or somewhere else, 
you bet. If not I'll go hungry. 

I don't sing bass. 

The largest salmon I ever caught, I got on a trolling line 
off the mouth of Minnie Brook in the upper part of Blue 
Mountain Lake, west side just inside the end of Long 
Island, as we called it then. It weighed twenty-four pounds 
nine ounces. S. Bennett, from the Fourteenth township, 
rowed my boat. This was in 1858; I think in July. Poor 
Si went down for the old flag, I heard. Well, a good many 
more brave boys took the same chances and went the same 
road. Brave Bill Wood was one of them. 



When I go in I shall take Glens Falls in my route, and 
maybe A. N. C. will join me. We'll carry in to Alvah a 
"drop o' comfort" and tell him to take care of his own traps 
and his own boats, and prepare for a final rest in the happy 
hunting grounds. 

NED BUNTLINE. 

Eagle's Nest, Del. Co., N. Y., March 28, 1882. 
FISHING UP STREAM 

My Watsontown friend, "J. R. H.," who likes falling 
down up stream, and who remembers how I handled the rib- 
bons over a tamden team in 1856, keeps me in kindly re- 
membrance, I see. Well, it is all right, my dear boy there 
is no accounting for taste, as the milk-maid said when she 
saw a man kiss a cow. You fish up stream and I'll fish 
down, and we'll both be contented with our catch. I am 
getting old and lazy and carry all the lead I ever use in 
fishing, in a game leg of mine, which I didn't have when 
you saw me first, and I can get down stream easier than I 
can go up. If possible I will try some of your streams next 
summer, J. R. H., especially if you'll save one big, wild 
trout for me to "come down stream" on. 

I don't know until I see the water and have the day 
what I'll fish with but I'll chuck something that the big 
trout will like. Bet your corkscrew on that. And should 
you incline to the lovely Beaverkill I will lead you a pi 
ant minuet along its wooded shores. A note to the Ameri- 
can Angler office will reach me wherever I may be wander- 
ing. And with a God bless you and all who love to go 
a-fishing, an revoir! NED BUNTLINB. 

BLUE MOUNTAIN LAKE AND NED BUNTLINE 

My thanks to Ned Buntline for his reply to my query 
about the size of trout in Blue Mountain Lake. I knew 
that he named the lakes around his forest home. 



Ned's christenings are still retained as well as vivid remem- 
brance of his skill with rifle and revolver. In fact, the tales 
told are marvelous. 

He used to ride one of his Indian ponies, on a run, to- 
ward a bottle, suspended from a limb of a tree by a string, 
and firing from the saddle, break the bottle. Now you will 
be told that he would cut the string every time with pistol 
or rifle ball, while his pony was running and the bottle 
swinging. More than once I have seen him, on his occa- 
sional visits to this place for supplies, making his purchases 
from his horse's back, riding into the various stores, and dis- 
mounting only when he had ridden up the hotel steps and 
day Ned entertained at dinner Commodore Gansevoort and 
his brother, Lieut. Gansevoort, U. S. N. As they stood to- 
gether, about the same size, "bearded like the pard," they 
formed a striking trio. An old fellow remarked, "There's 
three of the handiest men with weapons that ever struck 
Northern New York. Many and strange were the tales told 
of Ned Buntline in the days before the war, and one always 
causes me to smile. 

When he bought "Eagle's Nest" there were two large 
stacks of swamp hay on the place. Soon after came the news 
that he had burned it because he did not want his shooting 
box to look like a farmer's barnyard. Near where I sit 
hangs a souvenir of Eagle's Lake. It is a single-bladed 
paddle, presented to me by the whole-souled Mike McGuire, 
one of the best of guides. It is made from a black ash cut 
within sight of Ned's old home on the Eagle, and looks fit 
only for fairy hands to wield, but Mike said I could feel 
sure it would not fail, and so it proved when tested. 

Glens Falls, N. Y. A. N. C. 

NOTE Mr. A. Nelson Cheney, whose interesting sketches in the 
various sportsmen's journals were usually signed "A. N. C.," was 
one of the most practical writers of his time on angling and fish 
culture. He is remembered and his memory cherished as a 
thorough sportsman, and an able writer. F. E. p. 



CHAPTER^ TEN 

NED BUNTLINE AS A WRITER OF VERSE 




OLONEL JUDSON'S love of the woods 
and waters, his admiration for the ever- 
varying charms of Nature, his impassioned 
eloquence in speech and fervor in writing, 
all denote the poetic cast of the eccentric 
novelist. Few perhaps, even among his admirers, 
are familiar with his glowing stanzas grave and 
gay, serious and sentimental for it must be con- 
fessed that they were for the most part, merely the 
"unconsidered trifles" in the avalanche of literary 
work which he poured forth with amazing vigor and 
versatility. With poetic gifts of a high order, he 
chose, and no doubt wisely, to subordinate these and 
give his wayward fancy free rein in a direction that 
assured him greater fortune, though possibly less ex- 
alted fame. 

Of his poems it may be said, "They have been too 
ephemeral to stamp themselves deeply into the pub- 
lic attention; and thus, as so many feathers of fancy, 
have been blown aloft only to be whistled down the 



wind." A few of these, however, have been treas- 
ured as charming gems of verse, notably his stirring 
lines descriptive of "The Eagle's Nest," and the ex- 
quisite little poem, "The Hills of Delaware," pub- 
lished in former chapters of the present serial. 

Ned Buntline was a man of strong passions, as 
variable in mood as the aeolian harp in its tone, and 
he embodied the very spirit of poetic sentiment. He 
preferred the solitude of the wilderness to the social 
forms of the cities, and, as he often said with en- 
thusiasm, found more peace, happiness and unal- 
loyed pleasure in the haunts of bird and beast than 
in the midst of the surging tide of humanity. He 
found inspiration, like the pastoral poets of olden 
times, "in the twinkling of half-hidden brooks, in 
the gleaming of silver rivers, in the blue distance of 
mountains, in the repose of sequestered lakes; in the 
song of birds, in the sighing of the night-wind, in 
the fresh breath of the woods, in the perfume of the 
hyacinth, in the suggestive odor that comes to him, 
at eventide, from far distant undiscovered islands, 
over dim oceans, illimitable and unexplored." 

During the early years of Ned Runtime's stirring 
career the stern realities of life occupied his atten- 
tion, to the exclusion of poetical fancies, but when 
he finally found rest and peace at his home in the 
Hudson highlands, his mercurial spirit often found 
solace in spontaneous rhymes as varied as the lights 
and shadows that surrounded him. The lines en- 



120 

titled "March Born" may be given as characteris- 
tic of his serious moods: 

Born when tempests wild were raging 

O'er the earth, athwart the sky, 
When mad spirits seemed as waging 

Battle fierce for mast'ry ; 
Born when thunder loudly booming 

Shook the roof above my head 
When red lightning lit the glooming 

Which o'er land and sea was spread. 

Life since then a constant battle, 

Foes ahead and foes behind 
Like a skirmish line, the rattle 

Sweeping up on every wind- 
Clouds and shadows ever rapping 

All the paths my feet before- 
Spent my soul with eager mapping 

Plans that vanish evermore! 

Ape is coming swift upon me, 

Comes no rest with all these years 
Love, though truly it hath won me, 

Lessens not my many cares 
Only when my Maker calleth 

Can I lay my burden down, 
Then, as in the forest fallcth 

Stricken oak, my work is done! 

In 1 88 1 Colonel Judson's home was darkened by 
the death of little Irene, a bright and beautiful 
child, the idol of her parents. The pathetic lines 
published in the Stamford Mirror, under the title of 
"Our Lost Irene," indicates the deep grief and dt 
lation of the novelist: 



The long days come, the long days go, 

The silent, dreary nights as well 
They bring no solace for our woe, 

No words of comfort to us tell. 
The light which once upon us shone, 

The music which so sweetly fell, 
Is gone alas! forever gone 

We only know her parting knell. 

Oh, gloomy day! Oh, starless night! 

If we could only, only dream! 
In fancy see one ray of light 

Of faded joys feel but a gleam 
Could hear the patter of the feet 

That to and fro swift used to go, 
We'd bow our heads, the shadow greet, 

And kiss the Hand that dealt the blow. 

All, all is still but throbbing heart 

Still, dark and oh how desolate! 
Chide us not that the hot tears start, 

And choking sobs our loss relate ! 
Alone! our worshipped angel gone 

To kindred angels up above 
Alone alone we weep and moan 

For thee IRENE, our precious love! 

Eayle't Nest. March, 1881. 

The naturally cheerful and convivial character of 
the author finds expression in several entertaining 
bits of verse, illustrating his love of out-door sports 
and of hearty good-fellowship. The stanzas, "At 
Home/* are of this nature : 



- 122- 

Whcn the crisp north wind is blowing 

From the regions of the pole; 
When the squirrels cute are stowing 

Nuts within their nesting hole; 
When the song birds have deserted 

All the thickets on the hill; 
When dead leaf from branch is parted, 

And the ice-lock chains the rill : 

Then it is, in sanctum seated, 

With our rods and guns in sight; 
Joys of Summer are repeated 

By the voice of Mem'ry bright : 
Then it is, with comrades cheery, 

Hours with pleasure's woof are wrought; 
And true hearts, which else were weary, 

Are to fond communion brought : 

Then we tell our woodland stories: 

How we fished and where we shot; 
Revel in a sportsman's gloria. 

Which we know are ne'er forgot! 
Catch again the speckled beauty, 

Giant of his native stream ; 
Drink to man and manhood's di. 

And of loved ones think and dream. 

On rare occasions Ned Buntline indulged in an 
amusing burlesque or witticism, and his sense of 
humor on festive occasions, his ready wit and the 
ease with which he could prepare impromptu verse, 
made him a most delightful companion at club gath- 
erings and banquets. An admirable little hit perpe- 
trated on the occasion of a feast upon an ancient 



- 123- 

fowl is given herewith. It is entitled "A Washing- 
ton's Birthday Dinner": 

They slew a gobbler, grim and old, 

That never told a lie; 
They used a hatchet; fierce and bold 

They saw that gobbler die. 
They boiled it long, they boiled it hard, 

Then baked the "critter" down. 
Four hours they cooked believe your bard 

To do that turkey brown. 

With oysters fresh from Dorlon's stand 

They stuffed the ancient fowl; 
With butter sweet from Elgin's land 

They basted that old owl. 
Twas garnished well with parsley shred, 

And backed with viands rare; 
But we who "chawed" some tear drops shed, 

While others loud did swear. 

They said on far-off Aarat 

Old Noah dumped that bird, 
And all this time it took to fat 

Perhaps the grumblers erred ; 
But this we know, the toughest course 

We e'er had tried to masticate 
With jaws once used to mule or worse 

Was left upon our dinner plate. 

Ned buntline's hours of relaxation at his country 
home were characteristic of the man. As before 
stated, the sports of the field claimed the greater 
portion of his leisure days, but a careful supervi- 



124 

sion of the grounds, the blooded stock, and all the 
belongings of his beautiful home, the "Eagle's 
Nest," formed a never ceasing source of pleasure 
to him. At sunrise every morning it was his custom 
to call his little son with the cheery words : "Come, 
Eddie, it is time to raise the flag," and catching the 
spirit of patriotism the lad would gleefully assist in 
running up the stars and stripes to the top of the 
tall flag-staff on the lawn, where it might be seen, 
in fine weather, for a distance of fifty miles up and 
down the Delaware valley. Then the old veteran 
would usually give the lad a short drill in the manual 
of arms, and, after a morning drive along the moun- 
tain roads, take up his round of literary work for 
the day. 




CHAPTER^ ELEVEN 

CLOSING YEARS OF A REMARKABLE 
CAREER 




OME and country were equally reverenced 
by Colonel Judson. His early youth and 
years of mature manhood were devoted 
largely to his country's service, and as a 
partial recompense for the sacrifice so 
freely made upon the altar of patriotism, it was 
fitting that a happy home should be his in later 
years. He often expressed the desire that the even- 
ing of his life might be as peaceful as its early morn- 
ing and meridian had been tumultuous, and the wish 
was well fulfilled. 

A press reporter who visited the Eagle's Nest 
in 1885, says of the home life of the novelist: "I 
found him pleasantly surrounded, much as I had 
been told. He is now sixty-three years old, and a 
young son, four years old, is the light of the house. 
He is probably destined for the army, for I had not 
been in the library ten minutes when the Colonel was 
putting him through the manual of arms, with wood- 



126 

en sword and toy gun. The youngster has more 
playthings than any other boy in the state, and 
many of them are suggestive of mimic battle. 4 I 
mean that his childhood shall be happy/ said the 
Colonel, fondly regarding him, 'as mine was not. 
I get for him all the toys any boy needs. During 
my childhood I never had a kite or a ball, a trumpet 
or a marble. I never knew how to play. He has a 
trumpet and a tremenduous drum and a banjo, and 
this house is musical, for besides these we have a 
violin, and two guitars, a tambourine, organette, 
xylophone and piano. And I mean to bring Eddy 
up with an affection for the old flag. Every morn- 
ing he helps me raise a twenty-foot flag on that tall, 
spruce pole on the lawn, and every night at sun- 
down he and I man the halyards and lower it. All 
day every pleasant day it floats when I am at home, 
and is visible for twenty miles up and down the 
valley.' " 

Colonel Judson suffered acutely and almost con- 
stantly from his many wounds, yet with character- 
istic spirit he would not ask or receive a pension. 
His iron constitution gradually gave way under the 
physical strain endured through long years, and his 
visits to New York City became less and less fre- 
quent. He was a terrible sufferer from sciatica, and 
finally a serious affection of the heart came on, which 
baffled the skill of his physicians. With unabated 
zeal and spartan resolution he still plied his pen, 
though suffering untold agony, which he strove to 



hide lest it should add to the grief of his wife and 
child. 

While in this condition "Ned Buntline" prepared 
several thrilling bits of fiction, notably a serial en- 
titled "Incognita," written for the New York 
Waverly. At his request an easy reclining easy 
chair was sent him, for greater convenience in writ- 
ing, and in acknowledging receipt of this he wrote 
his publishers as follows, under date of June 18, 
1886: "The chair arrived last night, and I write my 
first letter in it this morning. It is a great relief to 
me, and I will soon get used to working in it. 'In- 
cognita' will grow very fast now. It will be a grand 
story, full of mystery, and the best I have ever writ- 
ten. It may be my last serial, and I want the Wa- 
verly to have my last letter, which this may be 

. Thanking you sincerely in taking so much 
care in selecting the chair, I will well repay you in 
good work on 'Incognita.' ' 

Ned Buntline's last contribution to the sporting 
journals was a brief sketch written April 30, 1886, 
and published in the Turf, Field and Farm as fol- 
lows : 

Propped up in my invalid chair by the window of my 
sick-chamber, where I have battled for life for ten long 
weary weeks, I look out on opening leaves, bright apple blos- 
soms, and the flashing waters of my private trout brook, 
while for the first time at this date for years I see no sign 
of snow on hillside or mountain. To-morrow a hundred 
rods will bend over bright waters within a radius of four 
or five miles of me, yet I must look sadly on my pet "Orvis" 
in the corner, and let the split bamboo rest. 



128 

It is hard when sympathizing visitors, and they are many, 
tell me the streams never before gave better promise of sport 
in this section. 

Stocked liberally by John N. Bennett and John Griffin, 
aided by myself, the west branch of the Delaware and the 
many brooks near by are literally alive with speckled beauty. 
The two first-named gentlemen have died within a year, and 
here am I, on my "beams' ends," looking sadly, yet not hope- 
lessly, on dark waters ahead. 

Strange, is it not? We, who have done so much to fill 
the waters, past the reward of labor and expenditure ! Telle 
fst vie. 

I don't like to tell tales out of school, but some of the boys 
hunting leeks for use in school have seen "millions of trout," 
as they wandered along the brooksides. And I am afraid 
encouraged by my physician they may have brought in one 
or two for me to look at. Just to cheer me up, you know! 

I can write no more. Hopeless of bending a rod this sea- 
son, if, indeed, I ever do again, I am faithfulh 

NED BUNTLINB. 

A subsequent letter to his friend Capt. L. A. 
Beardslee ("Piseco"), written in the same vein, 
gives evidence of the fraternal spirit of genuine 
sportsmanship. The letter bears date of June 19: 

DEAR OLD PISECO; Your flattering comparison of the 
hulk propped up on snores to do this writing, and the gal- 
lant, yet at last used-up Pawhatan, was received and read 
with a soul full of appreciation. The seamanship which 
brought her safely through her last terrible battle with the 
ocean's might and the tempest's will, can only be appreciated 
by a sailor. If I live I will try to work it up. I am now 
helpless so weak I can hardly keep up to write a few lines, 
yet my brain, thank heaven, seems clear. If I were only 
able to make a visit from you a pleasure, how glad I would 



129 

be to see you here. My horses stand idle in their stalls, my 
wife is by my bedside night and day, and I could do nothing 
to give you joy but to put rod and flies in your hand and 
tell you where to go. 

Mrs. Judson's tender care and constant solicitude 
for the sufferer soothed many of his hours of pain. 
To a friend he wrote : "My wife attends me like an 
angel of mercy. But for her gentle care and solici- 
tude I should have yielded to the grim messenger 
ere this time." One weary, sleepless night he 
penned the following lines, full of tender pathos: 

Counting pulse-beats, faint and slow, 
Counting seconds as they go 

Oh! how weary and how dreary! 
Throbbing heart full of pain 
Eyesight dim and aching brain 

Thus passes time to me. 

Drifting on the ebbing tide, 
Slow but sure, I onward glide 

Dim the vista seen before, 
Useless now to look behind 
Drifting on before the wind, 

Toward the unknown shore. 

Counting time by ticking clock, 
Waiting for the final shock 

Waiting for the dark forever 
Oh, how slow the moments go, 
None but I, me seems, can know 

How close the tideless river. 

His death occurred on Friday afternoon, July 16, 
1886. He was conscious to the last, and his last 



130 

words breathed a loving farewell to wife and child. 
The funeral was held the following Sunday, in con- 
formity with his request, and was attended by a con- 
course of friends gathered from far and near. "The 
remains were escorted from his late residence, called 
by him 'Eagle's Nest,' by delegations of Posts of 
Hobart, Delhi, Oneonta, Jefferson, Grand Gorge, 
Rondout, N. Y. f and Philadelphia, Pa., under com- 
mand of Captain Clark. The old flag he loved so 
well floated at half-mast in the clear atmosphere of 
the day on the lawn fronting the residence, and the 
spirited steed he had so often bestrode walked rider- 
less after the hearse. A large number of citizens 
also followed the mourners in procession, and the 
funeral is said to have been the largest ever seen in 
that neighborhood. The body was taken into the 
Methodist Church where brief ceremonies were 
held by Rev. L. 1 . Richards, Presbyterian pastor. 
Not half those in attendance could gain admittance. 
The procession then reformed and proceeded to the 
cemetery, where the remains of the gallant hero 
were fittingly consigned to their last resting-place, 
consistent with the ceremonies incident to the burial 
of a soldier and patriot, the sincere mourning of sor- 
rowing relatives and fricn 

The sentiment of regret over the death of the gal- 
lant scout, sailor, sportsman and novelist, was sin- 
cere and widespread. His many noble and daring 
deeds were called to mind, and few sacreligious 
hands were found to emblazon before the public the 



wayward deeds which, in his career, were the out- 
come of passionate impulse, not of premeditation. 
The Turf, Field and Farm paid the following ju- 
dicious tribute to his memory: 

Peacefully at his home, appropriately christened "Eagle's 
Nest," among the mountains which overlook the historic 
Hudson, this lion-hearted, generous and remarkable man 
bowed his head and gave up the struggle for life. The brief 
message which came to us over the wires from Stamford, 
last Friday, announcing the death of Edward Z. C. Judson, 
pained us deeply, though we had been prepared for his de- 
mise by the closing sentence in his last communication to us. 
It is now over two years since the rugged old sportsman 
ascended the stairs to our office, where he was always a wel- 
come visitor. That was his last visit, we believe, to the 
metropolis. History will speak of "Ned Buntline" as a 
dashing middy, a brave scout on the frontier, and as a fer- 
tile writer of fiction. It was as a sportsman and a brilliant 
contributor to sporting literature that we knew him and ad- 
mired him most. The volumes of the Turf, Field and Farm 
contain many graphic descriptions of the chase and spark- 
ling tales of the delights of angling, from his pen, and it was 
iis journal that he sent his last greeting to fellow-sports- 
men. It appeared in our issue of May 7 of this year, and it 
seems fitting that we should publish it again at this time. 
Between the lines we read of the pain and disease which 
was slowly but surely breaking the spirit and sapping the 
strong life. The closing paragraph was sadly prophetic. 
* * * * 

Mr. Judson was born in Philadelphia about 1819, his 
father being a practicing attorney in that city. Ned had no 
taste for the dry tomes of Blackstone and Kent, and com- 
menced an adventurous career by shipping as a cabin boy on 
a merchantman bound for the Pacific; thence to a man-of- 



132 

war, where by bravery he earned a midshipman's commis- 
sion from the hand of President Van Buren. His service in 
the Navy was brief but brilliant, and upon leaving the em- 
ploy of Uncle Sam, he dashed into sensational fiction, and 
with his ready pen coined the dollars which his generous 
hand was always ready to bestow upon the needy. One 
weekly paper in this city was elevated to prosperity by pub- 
lication in its columns of "Ned Runtime's" serials, for which 
the proprietors paid him enormous sums. The now famous 
"Buffalo Bill" was brought before the public gaze through 
"Ned Buntline's" stories of life on the plains, investing thr 
daring frontiersman with an air of romance which still clings 
to him. A conspicuous figure, broad of shoulder and strong 
of muscle, his countenance spoke of indomitable will and his 
keen eyes flashed with the fire of genius. Of late years he 
mingled but little with his fellow-men, but that the bonds 
of friendship were not loosened by this was evinced upon 
his funeral, when over eight hundred mourners followed the 
remains to "Ned Buntline's" last resting-place. He was 
buried at Stamford on Monday last with the honors of the 
Grand Army of the Republic, many prominent members of 
that order being present. 

Dr. Alban S. Payne ("Nicholas Spicer"), the 
popular sporting writer, a devoted and almost life- 
long friend of "Ned Buntline," gave a spontaneous, 
heart-felt tribute to his worth in the journal above 
mentioned. His words echo the sentiments of nu- 
merous friends of the deceased sportsman : 

Your last issue contains sad news to me. I find my dear 
old friend, Col. . Z. C. Judson, is no more. He was a 
generous, brave, noble man a remarkable man. Our 
acquaintance commenced in the office of the old Spirit of the 
Times, and antedates forty years. In all that time our 
friendship never paled. "Nick Spicer" always felt and be- 



133 

licvcd that at least two noble hearts loved him, one was our 
departed friend, Col. E. Z. C. Judson, the other the late 
James Oakes, of Boston. At any rate Spicer knows that he 
greatly admired them, for their ripe intellects and their true 
manhood, yes, something more than that he loved them 
dearly, deeply, tenderly. To the bereaved home folks the 
homage of his sympathy goes out in such strength of feeling 
that he cannot find words adequate for its expression. To 
the dear Old Guard whom he loved so well, Col. Judson's 
loss will be irreparable, for the noblest old Roman of them 
all has fought his last battle, quietly folded his tent and gone 
to rest. I send you the last letter that I ever received from 
our dear old friend. I prize it highly: 

Eagles Nest, 
Stamford, Delaware Co., N. Y. 

DEAR DOCTOR: You had best read the Turf, Field and 
Farm more carefully. I have little hope of ever using a rod 
again. I have been eleven weeks in bed or in my invalid 
chair, with a combination of heart disease, valvular obstruc- 
tion, etc., etc. ... I have been sick all winter, not out 
of my chamber or able to walk even with crutches for eleven 
weeks. My case is a bad one, and my physician with coun- 
sel finds it hard to baffle. I can write but little, but try my 
best to keep up. God bless you and yours. My dear wife 
nurses me like an angel and is my best hope. 

Ever yours, JUDSON. 

It is in answer to a letter of congratulation of mine to him 
on the strange supposition that his health had improved so 
much that he was "hoping to bend a rod." I should have 
read it "hopeless of bending a rod," as it really occurs in 
the Turf, Field and Farm of the 7th of May. But the 
mistake was natural, the wish was father to the thought. 
In conclusion, I can say no man ever visited Virginia who 
made more or truer friends than Col. Judson. Many a 



-'34 

manly eye will moisten when they learn of the death of their 
generous, noble old friend, but noneno, not /ir <:an feel 
a deeper or a more sincere grief for the death of their friend, 
or whose heart pulsates in a stronger rhythm of sympathy 
for his bereaved family than docs the heart of his and your 
old friend. 

NICHOLAS SPICER. 

In the patriotic order, Sons of America, no mem- 
ber was more widely known or more highly appre- 
ciated than Colonel Judson. He had been one of 
the founders of the order, and at different times 
illed the position of National Vice-President and 
National Master of Forms and Ceremonies. It is 
natural, therefore, that his death should be dec 
deplored by the comrades of that organization, 
that a feeling eulogy should be given at the ha 
of Mr. H. J. Stager, editor of the Camp News, 
official organ of the order, from which we quote: 

We are deeply grieved to make this sad announcement to 
our brethren. Since February last Brother Judson has been 
troubled with heart disease for which no relief could be ob- 
tained. He was aware that he might pass off of the a. 
stage of life at any moment and himself arranged many of 
the details and gave directions as to what should fo! 
decease. He felt a willingness to be freed from the afflic- 
tions of this life, his onix xoluitude being the part 
must follow with his dear wife and ton upon whom the 
fondest affections of a warm true heart were in hed. 

He was conscious to the last and excepting a token of the 
warmest love to the dear companion of his best years, who 
was ever near and with him to minister to his every want, 
he repeated the words so close to his heart and in full con- 



-135 

sistency with the object of his whole life, that "Americans 
must rule America." 

His end was as peaceful and gradual as the sleep of an 
infant, and his spirit was wafted to the side of the great 
patriots of our land who have gone before and whose deeds 
and works while in the flesh will be remembered in the 
brightest pages of our national history. For many years he 
had resided at Stamford, surrounded by all the comforts that 
man can enjoy, and ever ready to do his utmost to advance 
the interests of society, and to do his part to benefit man- 
kind. His whole life was devoted to the service of his coun- 
try, and its flag, and honor his deepest solicitude and study, 
and on many occasions his life was offered as a sacrifice in 
hi> devotion to these principles, and his miraculous escapes 
wonderful almost beyond belief. He excelled as an author 
in fiction whose stories have amused millions of readers, and 
"Ned Buntline" is known all over the world. 

He took a highly active part in our Order, was present on 
several occasions as a delegate in the State Camp of Pennsyl- 
vania. He held membership in Camp 7, Pa., Philadelphia, 
since 1868, being proposed therein by the writer; Philadel- 
phia Commandery No. 4, and also belonged to the Sons of 
America Post No. 77, Grand Army of the Republic, in Phila- 
delphia. He organized the Order in the States of Maine, 
New Jersey, and Illinois, while traveling with his "Scouts 
of the Plains" combination. He helped to organize the Na- 
tional Camp in 1872; was first National Vice-President and 
then elected as National Master of Forms and Ceremonies 
in 1872-73. He was ever earnest and practical and never 
lost interest in the cause. The present Red Degree ritual 
of our Order is the work of his pen and will stand as an ever- 
lasting monument reflecting his fidelity to our cause and de- 
votion to true American principles. He was liberal with his 
means and made many presentations to struggling Camps and 
members. In his decease we lose one of our ablest and best 



-136- 

standard bearers, whose loss it will be impossible to fully re- 
place. 

In 1871, he was married to Miss Anna Fuller, an Ameri- 
can lady of his native town, to whom he was most earnestly 
devoted, and in the happy union of these years a daughter 
and son were added to the family. The daughter died in 
1881, and his grief in this loss was excessive. He now sleeps 
by her side where he had erected an almost perfect image 
of his lost child, in Italian marble, to mark the spot of her 
burial. His son is a bright promising youth of five years who 
will not forget the patriotic teaching of the father who be- 
gan thus early to instruct him. 

Mr. Charles J. Beattie, a prominent member of 
the Sons of America, said in presenting appropriate 
resolutions of regret and condolence: 

Brother President, our brethren have deputed to me the 
melancholy duty of preparing and presenting to this Camp 
resolutions of regret at the death of our honored comrade 
and brother, Colonel Edward Z. C. Judson, of Camp 7, 
Pa.; it is a duty always sad and mournful, seldom pleasant 
and never delightful to write an epitaph or pen an obituary 
resolution, and in this case the notice of the hero's death 
brings with it not alone the sorrow but the sigh and the tear, 
and visits every heart with the pangs of prief, every bosom 
with agonized feelings of loss and loneliness, and every mind 
with recollections of his words and works now ceased for- 
ever. The fearless heart of the sterling patriot is now still 
in death, it throbs no more with the holy emotions that 
heretofore thrilled it for home and country, his immortal pen 
that aroused sentiments of patriotism in every land is laid 
aside forever: his eloquent tongue which always uttered 
words of cheer for friend and brother, for flag and father- 
land, and thundered denunciations against our count 
foes, is now quieted in deathly silence; his sword that flashed 
brightly in the line of battle against sedition and anarchy for 



-137 

a united nation and a free constitution, is now forever 
sheathed ; no more shall he visit our Camps, below his earthly 
career is closed, his mission of usefulness here is ended and 
he has gone to join the brilliant throng of patriots, soldiers 
and statesmen on the deathless side of time's swift flowing 
river, and to-day he is an initiate in the Camp of the Su- 
preme President of the universe. . . . While all that 
is mortal of cur brother rests in the quiet grave at Stamford 
his immortality has now begun; over him death had no con- 
quest, the grave no triumph. Brethren, let us imitate his 
example, and follow in his footsteps; let us devote our lives 
to our country and like him be ever faithful through life and 
unto death ; revere his memory, remember his counsels, and 
never forget his last words solemnly uttered on the bed of 
death, "Americans must rule America." I request, Brother 
President, that all arise and adopt these resolutions in silence 
by a standing vote. 



In preparing the present series of fragmentary 
memoirs, necessarily very imperfect and incomplete, 
the writer has attempted merely to convey a passing 
glimpse, a few random records, illustrating, yet by 
no means giving a comprehensive view of the re- 
markable career of "Ned Buntline," as a sailor, a 
soldier, a frontiersman, a sensational novelist, and, 
above all, a devoted lover of out-door sports. A 
careful critical resume of his life and writings would 
require volumes in place of a few brief chapters. 



-138- 

When a complete biography shall be written, if ever, 
by any author competent to do justice to the work, it 
will be found that the volume here presented, far 
from exaggerating the personal courage and dar- 
ing, the heroic deeds and wild adventures of this 
modern knight errant, one tithe has scarcely been 
told. A detailed biography would resemble, in 
thrilling interest, the adventures of the Arabian 
Nights. His meteor-like career, however, closed as 
calmly as the summer eve that lulled him to a final 
rest. 

After life's fitful fever he sleeps well. 

BIBLIOGRAPHY 

It has been estimated that the literary work of Ned Bunt- 
line his serial stories and miscellaneous writings if col- 
lected in book form would fill no less than two hundred 
volumes of good size. The following is a partial list of his 
published books as recorded by bibliographers: 

1. The Captain's Pig. 

2. Ella Adams; or, The Demon of Fire. 1863. 

3. The Rattlesnake; or, The Rebel Privateer. 1863. 

4. The Grosbeak Mansion; a Mystery of New York. 1864. 

5. Sadia, a Heroine of the Rebellion. 1864. 

6. Life in the Saddle; or, The Cavalry Scout 186$. 

7. The Parricides; or, The Doom of the Assassin. 186$. 

8. The Volunteer; or, The Maid of Monterey. 186$. 

9. The Beautiful Nun. 1866. 

10. Magdalena, the Outcast 1866. 

11. Clarence Rhett. 1866. 

12. The Battle of Hate; or, Heart* Are Trumps. 1867. 

13. Quaker Saul, the Idiot Spy. 1869. 

14. Red Warrior. 1869. 

15. Thanendenaga, the Scourge. 1869. 

16. Red Ralph, the Ranger. 1870. 

17. The Sea Bandit. 1870. 

18. The Wronged Daughter. 1870. 

19. Morgan; or, the Knight of the Black Flag. 

20. Buffalo Bill. 1881. 

21. Wrestling Joe. 1881. 



139 

22. The B'Hoys of New York. 

23. The Buccaneer's Daughter. 

24. The Conspirator's Victim. 

25. The G'Hals of New York. 

26. The Jew's Daughter. 

27. Mysteries and Miseries of New York. 

28. Three Years After. 

29. The White Cruiser. 

30. The Black Avenger of the Spanish Main. 

31. The Red Right Hand, a Tale of Indian Warfare. 

32. Hilliare Henderson; or, The Secret Revealed. 

33. The Convict; or, The Conspirator's Victim. 
54. Mermet Ben; ,or, The Astrologer King. 

35. The Queen of the Sea; or, Our Lady of the Ocean. 

36. The King of the Sea; a Tale of the Fearless Free. 

37. Luona Prescott; or, The Curse Fulfilled. 

38. The Man o' War Man's Grudge; A Romance of the Revo- 

lution. 

39. English Tom; or, The Smuggler's Secret. 

40. Saul Sabberday; or, The Idiot Spy. 

41. The Wheel of Misfortune; or, The Victims of Lottery and 

Policy Dealers. 

42. Miriam; or, The Jew's Daughter. 

43. The White Wizard; or, The Great Prophet of the Seminoles. 

44. Stella Delorme; or, The Comanche's Dream. 

45. Norwood; or, Life on the Prairie. 

46. Cruisings Afloat and Ashore; from the Private Log of Ned 

Buntline. 

47. Ned Buntline's Life Yarn. 

48. The Last of the Buccaneers; a Yarn of the Eighteenth Cen- 
tury. 

49. Elfrida, The Red Rover's Daughter. 

50. Sea Waif; or, The Terror of the Coast 

51. The Shell Hunter; or, An Ocean Love Chase. 

52. Bill Tredegar; A Tale of the Monongahela. 

53. The Miner Detective. 

54. Darrow, the Floating Detective. 

55. Shadowed and Trapped. 

56. Barnacle Backstay. 

57. Mountain Tom. 

58. Orthodox Jeeras. 
$9. Hazel Eye. 

60. Rover Wild. 

61. Sensation Sate. 

62. Rattlesnake Ned. 

63. Guliette, th Waif. 

64. Big Foot Wallace. 

65. Harry Bluff, the Reefer. 

66. Navigator Ned. 

(7. Wild Bill's Last Trail. 




PS Pond, Frederick Eugene 

2156 Life and adventures of 

J2Z8 "Ned Buntline" 



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